Looking for Miss America : a pageant's 100-year quest to define womanhood / Margot Mifflin
Book | Counterpoint | 2020 | First hardcover edition.
1 hold on first copy returned of 12 copies

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First hardcover edition.
310 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (some color) ; 24 cm
Includes bibliographical references (pages [253]-310).
Introduction : American beauties -- Bathing beauties -- Dreamers -- Seekers -- Achievers -- Resisters -- Trailblazers -- Iconoclasts -- Believers -- Survivors.
"Looking for Miss America is a fast-paced narrative history of the Miss America pageant from its start as a shocking east coast bathing-beauty revue in 1921 to its recent rebirth as a swimsuit-free "scholarship competition." It introduces the dreamers and dissidents, hustlers and heroines who won; the celebrities, including Norman Rockwell, Joan Crawford, and Rod McKuen, who judged; and the masterminds behind it, like director Lenora Slaughter, who "picked the pageant up by its bathing suit straps and put it down in an evening gown" in the 1930s, transforming it from a seaside skin show into a national institution. Approaching its 100th anniversary, the pageant has survived scandal, protests, mockery, and the mutiny of a queen who got cold feet and skipped town the night she won. One winner called Miss America "the kind of girl who would go into a bar and order orange juice in a loud voice"; another claimed "she's not a real person. She's something that happens every year." Looking for Miss America breaks down the blend of capitalism, patriotism, class anxiety and cultural mythology that has fueled the pageant, the racial biases it has perpetuated, and the social mobility it has enabled"-- Provided by publisher.
9781640092235 (hardcover)
1640092234 (hardcover)
9781640092242 electronic book
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