The year-old beauty pageant airing on ABC on Sunday night has dropped its swimsuit competition -- and will stop rating women on their physical appearance, period. The organization is also ditching the evening gown portion of the program, and will instead allow participants to slip into something that makes them feel more confident and comfortable while expressing their personal style. The new rules also come amidst the MeToo era, as women have shared their stories and advocated on behalf of victims of sexual harassment and abuse. But this year's pageant has also been clouded with controversy after the current reigning Miss America, Cara Mund, recently claimed i n an open letter that the Miss America Organization has marginalized her over the past year. Her letter contains mischaracterizations and many unfounded accusations. We are reaching out to her privately to address her concerns.
I survived the swimsuit competition: Here's why other women shouldn't have to
Miss America Swimsuit Competition Through the Years | Teen Vogue
I used to shrug off the feminists who made a big deal about the swimsuit competition in pageants being sexist; I believed my mentors in the pageant world that, like in body-building competitions, swimsuits just allowed contestants to show off their inner confidence and judges to assess our physical fitness. So, hearing the news that Miss America will forgo the swimsuit competition , I shed no tears; they will not be alone in the pageant universe. And both systems somehow still manage to pick the most beautiful and fit women in the world as their winners. The entire pageant world already realized that old school pageantry is dying off, especially since the people who watch at home want a well-rounded, relatable human being as their winner. I came late to the pageant world, partly because I have always considered myself a strong feminist though I hold strong conservative beliefs and I know that any good feminist is supposed to hate pageantry with a passion.
I didn't mind the swimsuit competition when I was in pageants. But it was used to body shame us.
The Miss America organization just announced a huge change in the competition format — they are taking steps to judge contestants more on their inner beauty, rather than their outer beauty. The pageant released a statement saying that "this change in format signals the end of the swimsuit portion of the competition. In its place, each candidate will participate in a live interactive session with the judges, where she will highlight her achievements and goals in life and how she will use her talents, passion, and ambition to perform the job of Miss America. As a former pageant contestant who has competed for the crown on a state and national level, I applaud the organization for taking the right steps.
A swimsuit competition , more commonly now called a bikini contest , is a beauty contest which is judged and ranked while contestants wear a swimsuit , typically a bikini. One of the judging criteria is the physical attractiveness of the contestants. The Big Four international beauty pageants have included examples of such a competition.