10-second review: An African-American father watches the Miss America Pageant with his daughter. Confronts the unspoken belief that white women are the image of the perfect American woman.
“I miss live TV. It is the closest thing to theater for the masses.”
“Everyone in our culture wants to win a prize.”
“We went, my wife and I [To Pose with Vanessa Williams, the newly-crowned and black Miss America], to celebrate the grand moment when white American popular culture decided to embrace black women as something other than sexual subversives or fat, kindly maids cleaning up and caring for white families.”
Best American Essays of the Century. Editors: Oates and Atwan.