the surrender of miss fairbourne

One day humankind discovered aesthetics and we have been preening ourselves ever since. But only a few of us dare to declare that we are more beautiful than the next person. The beauty contest in all its form, whether it be a competition to find the most beautiful woman in the world or to find the man—or woman—with perfectly formed pectorals, must be the most blatant display of peacockesque attention-seeking, unmatched in its glamour, glitz and sheer exhibitionism. Pageant celebrates the culture of the beauty contest, from the well-known spectacles of Miss World and Mr. and Miss Universe to the flamboyance of Alternative Miss World; from subculture contest, such as Miss Hell’s Angels, to the bizarre, for example, the crowning of Miss Sausage Queen to promote Nation Hot Dog Week. In America alone 35,000 beauty pageants are held through the year, but the beauty contest is a truly international phenomenon. Pageant features contest from around the world. An irresistible combination of nostalgia and contemporary kitsch, the book is unique study of our human obsession with the beautiful. * A nostalgic trip through time with pageants such as Miss America and Miss USA and including more unusual contests like Miss Car Wash (California), Miss Kansas Turnpike; Mr. America and Miss Nude UK.

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