Miss World

From Academic Kids

The Miss World pageant (not to be confused with Miss Universe) is an international beauty pageant founded in the United Kingdom by Eric Morley in 1951.

It started as the Festival Bikini Contest, in honour of the recently introduced swimwear of the time, but was called Miss World by the press. It was originally planned as a one-off event.

Opposition to the wearing of bikinis led to their replacement with more modest swimwear after the first contest. In 1959, the BBC started broadcasting the competition. The pageant's popularity grew as the popularity of television grew.



The Miss World pageant seems to be the target of many controversies since its first edition. In the 1960s and 1970s, the pageant was marred by scandals. The 1960s included tabloid coverage of nude photographs and the alcoholic excesses of the winners. The rise in feminism led to further controversy. The first winner from the United States, 1973's Marjorie Wallace, was forced to resign because of her high-profile serial dating. The 1974 winner resigned four days later after it was discovered she was a single mother. In 1977, a United Nations boycott was organized because of the pageant permitting the participation of South Africa, a participation which ended the next year. The 1980 winner Gabriela Brum of Germany resigned one day after winning initially claiming that her boyfriend disapproved. A few days later it emerged that she had been forced to resign after it was discovered that she posed naked for a magazine.

In the 1980s, the pageant repositioned itself with the slogan Beauty With a Purpose. The contest added tests of intelligence and personality. By the 1990s, the pageant was reaching two billion viewers from almost every country in the world. The competition has been seen as old-fashioned and rather un-PC in its native Britain. Despite the global appeal, the show has not been broadcast on any major terrestrial British TV network for several years, although SkyTravel provided coverage in 2004. In 2002, a scandal over the pageant started riots in Nigeria, where the pageant was to be held. After over 200 people were killed and countries withdrawing their delegates, the pageant was moved back to London, where it started.

21st century

Eric Morley passed away as the pageant entered the new century. The century saw its first black African winner, Agbani Darego, in 2001. In 2002 the competition was slated for Calabar, Cross River State of Nigeria. This choice was controversial, as a northern Nigerian woman, Amina Lawal, was awaiting death by stoning for adultery under Sharia law there. A ThisDay (Lagos, Nigeria) newspaper editorial suggesting that Muhammad, the prophet of Islam, would probably have chosen one of his wives from among the contestants had he been alive to see it, resulted in riots that started on November 22 in which over 200 people were killed. Because of these riots, the 2002 pageant was moved to London. A fatwa urging the beheading of the woman who wrote the offending words, Isioma Daniel, was issued in Nigeria, but was declared null and void by the relevant Saudi Arabian authorities. The eventual winner of the pageant was Azra Akin of Turkey, the first predominantly Muslim country to hold the title since Egypt in 1954. She was followed by Ireland's Rosanna Davison, daughter of the "Lady in Red" singer Chris de Burgh. In 2004 the crown was decided for the first time by a global vote, resuling in the victory of Peru's Maria Julia Mantilla and the return of the title to Latin America after nine years.

Further notes

The only international pageant to have over 100 countries participate, Miss World is considered less "predictable" than many of its international rivals. The representatives of India, among them international actress Aishwarya Rai, were the success stories of the 1990s, capturing the crown four times, once back-to-back. Although China has been doing extremely well since entering and hosting the pageant (a top five placement from 2001 to 2003) the pageant has yet to crown an East Asian winner.

Title holders

Year Miss World Country Event location
1951 Kiki Haakonson Sweden Lyceum Ballroom London, U.K.
1952 May Louise Flodin Sweden London, U.K.
1953 Denise Perrier France London, U.K.
1954 Antigone Costanda Egypt London, U.K.
1955 Carmen Dujim Zubillaga Venezuela London, U.K.
1956 Petra Schürmann West Germany London, U.K.
1957 Marita Lindahl Finland London, U.K.
1958 Penelope Anne Coelen South Africa London, U.K.
1959 Corine Rottschafer Netherlands London, U.K.
1960 Norma Gladys Cappagli Argentina London, U.K.
1961 Rosemarie Frankland United Kingdom London, U.K.
1962 Catharina Lodders Netherlands London, U.K.
1963 Carole Joan Crawford Jamaica London, U.K.
1964 Ann Sydney United Kingdom London, U.K.
1965 Lesley Langley United Kingdom London, U.K.
1966 Reita Faria India London, U.K.
1967 Madeleine Hartog Bell Peru London, U.K.
1968 Penelope Plummer Australia London, U.K.
1969 Eva Rueber-Staier Austria Royal Albert Hall London, U.K.
1970 Jennifer Hosten Grenada London, U.K.
1971 Lucia Tavares Petterle Brazil London, U.K.
1972 Belinda Green Australia London, U.K.
1973 Marjorie Wallace United States London, U.K.
1974 Anneline Kriel 1 South Africa London, U.K.
1975 Wilnelia Merced Puerto Rico London, U.K.
1976 Cindy Breakspeare Jamaica London, U.K.
1977 Mary Stavin Sweden London, U.K.
1978 Silvana Suarez Argentina London, U.K.
1979 Gina Swainson Bermuda London, U.K.
1980 Kimberley Santos 2 Guam London, U.K.
1981 Pilin Leon Venezuela London, U.K.
1982 Mariasela Alvarez Dominican Republic London, U.K.
1983 Sarah-Jane Hutt United Kingdom London, U.K.
1984 Astrid Herrera Venezuela London, U.K.
1985 Hofi Karlsdottir Iceland London, U.K.
1986 Giselle LaRonde Trinidad and Tobago London, U.K.
1987 Ulla Weigerstorfer Austria London, U.K.
1988 Linda Petursdottir Iceland London, U.K.
1989 Aneta Kreglicka Poland Hong Kong
1990 Gina Marie Tolleson United States Palladium Theatre London, U.K.
1991 Ninibeth Jiminez Venezuela Atlanta, Georgia U.S.A.
1992 Julia Kourotchkina Russia Sun City, South Africa
1993 Lisa Hanna Jamaica Sun City, South Africa
1994 Aishwarya Rai India Sun City, South Africa
1995 Jacqueline Aguilera Marcano Venezuela Sun City, South Africa
1996 Irene Skliva Greece Bangalore, India
1997 Diana Hayden India Mahe, Seychelles
1998 Linor Abargil Israel Mahe, Seychelles
1999 Yukta Mookhey India Olympia Hall London, U.K.
2000 Priyanka Chopra India Millennium Dome London, U.K.
2001 Agbani Darego Nigeria Sun City, South Africa
2002 Azra Akin Turkey Alexandra Palace, London
2003 Rosanna Davison Ireland Sanya, People's Republic of China
2004 Maria Julia Mantilla Peru Sanya, People's Republic of China
1 Crowned after Helen Morgan of the United Kingdom resigned.
2 Crowned after Gabriela Brum of West Germany resigned


As of 2004:

Times Country
5 India
5 Venezuela
4 United Kingdom
3 Jamaica
3 Sweden
2 Argentina
2 Australia
2 Austria
2 Netherlands
2 Iceland
2 Peru
2 South Africa
2 United States
1 Brazil
1 Dominican Republic
1 Egypt
1 Finland
1 France
1 Germany
1 Greece
1 Grenada
1 Guam
1 Ireland
1 Israel
1 Nigeria
1 Poland
1 Puerto Rico
1 Russia
1 Trinidad and Tobago
1 Turkey

See also

External links and references

nl:Lijst van Miss World winnaressen sv:Miss World


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