Colombia’s Beauty Pageant Obsession

Via Colombia Reports links section, I found an interesting story of Colombia’s beauty pageant obsession told through the eyes of a photographer. Here are two snippets from the story…

Even in comparison to our own celebrity-obsessed culture, the arguments and scoring in Colombia had developed to the level of sport. I thought of all the young girls in the audiences with their jaws dropped in awe. Had they already decided what it meant to be a woman, what it meant to have value, what they needed to be loved? Given my friend’s experience and the questions and emotional baggage I began with, I think I was preconditioned to see things in fairly stark terms.”

….

“It’s boring to be a victim, and tiring. Pageants, soccer matches, festivals and concerts are not only opportunities to forget, but a form of defiance. A refusal to be defined by the violence or to wait in vain for it to end. Colombia’s problems have been grave, but Colombians themselves are astonishingly optimistic. It is one of the things I respect most about them, one of the things that keeps drawing me back.” – Resolve (more here)

 More info

You can catch some great images of the Chica Barbie series taken by Carl Bower, the photographer of the story, here on his site.

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