When Kira Kazantsev was crowned the new Miss America on Sunday night, a feeling of déjá vu set in.
Not only was she white — like all but nine of the 94 winners before her — she also fit snugly into a narrowly defined standard of Western female attractiveness: early 20s, long flowing hair and a thin, painstakingly tanned physique that would not seem out of place in a Victoria’s Secret catalog.
In many ways, the Miss Indian World pageant’s definition of what American beauty truly entails is the ideological antithesis to Miss America. Indeed, since 1984, this five-day competition based in Albuquerque, N.M., has honored Native American woman for their contributions to their communities, not their bikini bodies. The top award is given to the contestant who “best represents her culture,” according to Al Jazeera.
ART HISTORY MEME → [1/8] Artists
José Guadalupe Posada, 1852-1913
La Calavera Catrina (c. 1910-1913) | The Birth of Venus (1913) | La Calavera de Don Quijote (1905) | La Calavera de Don Folias y El Negrito (date unknown) | La Calavera Huertista (c. 1910)
Born to working-class parents of indigenous descent, Posada became one of Mexico’s greatest engravers and political satirists, and is considered by many to be the founder of modern Mexican art and aesthetics. He is best known for his calaveras, which he set in scenes of political satire. Posada’s artistic style and and expression for the political concerns of Mexico’s working classes greatly inspired the style of Diego Rivera, who later paid homage to Posada in his mural Dream of a Sunday Afternoon.
Can we not glorify Posada this season? Seriously. The man’s satire included the mocking of queer/trans mexican@s.
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