Miss People's Republic of China - The New Times of China
But there's more, of course. In the previous decades, themunist rule, as a number of Marxist states in Eastern Europe, among them the USSR and the Democratic German Republic, did not send entries to Miss Universe and Miss World.
China Under Mao Zedong
After China's independence in 1949, Madame Chiang Ching, "First Lady of the Cultural Revolution" (1966-76), and Mao Tse-tung (or Mao Zedong), who said which "women hold up half the sky", proclaimed total war against the capitalistic traditions: tourism, beauty pageants, and western clothes. During that time, the cult of beauty was replaced by the cult of Mao Tse-tung. The People's Republic underwent over 25 years of Maoist government.
In contrast to the People's Republic, Taiwan sent a handful of contestants to Miss Universe and other international pageants in the 1960s. Against all odds, Taiwan became one of the world's beauty pageant superpowers, along with the United States, Argentina, and Britain. On November 9, 1961, Grace Li Shiu-ying was first runner-up to Miss World in the United Kingdom. During that year, Lily Wang Li-ling was a semi-finalist at the Miss Universe contest in America. In addition, Dolly Ma was one of 15 semi-finalists in the First Miss International in Long Beach, California. On July 14, 1962, Miss Taiwan Universe Helen Liu Shiu-man finished in the Top Four in Miami Beach, Florida. Nine months later, Helen was first runner up to Miss Asia-Pacific in Tokyo.
At the end of 1964, Taiwan's delegate Linda Lin finished third in London, behind Great Britain and Argentina. Meanwhile, four months ago, Lana Yu Yi made the Top Five in Miss Universe 1964. Otherwise, Macy Shih earned the 1968 Miss Asia-Pacific title in Quezon City, Philippines. Finally, Patsy Wu was crowned Miss Queen of the Pacific Quest in Australia in 1969.
During Cold War, Taiwan was not the only Chinese territory in the pageants. Hong Kong, a British dependency from 1842 until July 1, 1997, alsopeted in the United States and London. But there's more. The 24th Miss Universe was held in 1976 in Hong Kong, a few kilometers from the People's Republic. In the subsequent decade, Eric Morley, Chairman of the Miss World Organization, chose HK to host the 1989 Miss World.
Goodbye Madame Chiang Ching!
After the fall of Madame Chiang Ching, an admirer of Sweden's actress Greta Garbo, the new Chinese leaders, among them Deng Xiaoping, put an end to the Maoist policies. However, despite the end of Maoism, women weren't allowed topete in beauty pageants. That's why China, on the other hand, decline to participate in the global contests in the 1990s.It was not until 2002 that the Marxist country held its first beauty contest. Since then, China was one of the last places, apart from the likes Vietnam, Cambodia and Mongolia, in the world to hold a contest. Before themunists came to power in 1949, this nation had had several beauty queens.
Zhuo Ling -- A Pioneer in China
Against all odds, Zhuo Ling was crowned Miss China Universe in the early 2000s. After winning the crown, she went to San Juan de Puerto Rico, host to Miss Universe 2002. Without the financial advantages of so many of the world's beauty queens producers, Miss China participated in Miss Universe, where she had three tests: firstly, a physical fitness evaluation, (finished fourth); an evening gownpetition (first place);and finally an exhaustive personal interview with 12 international judges, among them Tatjana Patitz (fashion model), Marisol Malaret (former Miss Universe), and Christopher McDonald (performer). During an interview for the New York Times, she told, "Generally when you're picked as your country's representative there are some special events and you're given some tutoring, I didn't have a chance to help my country. And I didn't have a former Miss China at my side. It made me pretty sad.''
But China gave a more than satisfactory showing in its first-ever involvement in MU in themonwealth of Puerto Rico. Surprisingly, Ms. Zhung, who speaks fluent English with an Asian accent, made history when was first runner-up, ahead of some of Latin America's most beautiful girls, among them Vanessa Mendoza (Colombia's representative) and Cinthya Lander (Miss Venezuela). According to the new results, she finished second, behind Justine Pasek, Miss Panama (Russia's Oxana Fedorova had won but she was disqualified by the Miss Universe Organization).
Once the People's Republic of China became a member of the Miss Universe Pageant, several beauty contests popped up like never before in Shangai, Beijing and other Chinese metropolises, as well as Tibet. At the same time, Amelia Vega, 2003 Miss Universe, arrived in China for a visit. Likewise, it hosted a host of global events, including Miss International (2004, 2006, 2008, 2009 ), and Miss Tourism Queen International (2004-2009 ). Since November 2003, up to 800 foreign beauty queens have arrived to Beijing and other cities, including entries from countries which does not have diplomatic ties with the People's Republic.
From 2003 to 2005, Hainan, a tropical island in the Chinese Sea, hosted the Miss Worldpetitions. Two years on, at the end of 2007, Zhang Zi-lin, a well-trained contestant, was crowned as the new Miss World, making it the firstmunist country in the world to produce a Miss World title since 1989.
Alejandro Guevara Onofre: Freelance writer. Alejandro is author of a host of essays about over 220 countries and dependencies (and American States as well), from ecology, history, tourism and national heroes to Olympic sports, foreign relations, and wildlife. In addition, he has published some books on women's rights, among them "History of the Women in America" and "Famous Americans".