Who better to shed light on gender issues and violence then those objectifying themselves in beauty pageants? The Miss Peru 2018 contestants used their event this year to shed light on an important issue in their country, gender violence. A lot of countries and cultures have an unspoken realization of this issue. With the coordination of the event organizer, these women had the opportunity to speak out and broadcast the stories they knew of and wanted to help prevent future cases.

There was a video streamed to catch the viewers’ attention. The video consisted of newspaper articles of cases that had gone unnoticed, with women who were victims of violent unnecessary crimes. To add to the effect, the video streamed during the swimsuit segment, one of the most objective portions of the contest, to show fearless women deserve respect no matter what environment. The contestants then gave facts and statistics out about the subject when asked their body measurements during one segment. Camila Canicoba kicked it off with 2,202 as her measurement, when in reality this was the number of cases of female victims in Peru in the last decade. Many others followed her with different illustrative stats. In the final portion they stated laws that they would change to help diminish the amount of cases that occur. As later explained by the event coordinators, it turned out the whole event was secretly devoted to the issue.

The issue of gender violence is much worse in certain areas of the world, but it is important to draw attention to it rather than just knowing it occurs. As stated in a Buzzfeed interview by a former beauty queen and the event’s organizer Jessica Newton, “Everyone who does not denounce and everyone who does not do something to stop this is an accomplice.”

One important, if not the most important, form of communication is art and media. To have the backdrop video, the statistics, and the stories is inspiration enough in art form. Along with that, to broadcast it during a global event through the media was an even more dramatic way to make a move. In an event known to hold unrealistic standards for women, they seized the opportunity to advocate for all women who are victims in other ways. Art can be a voice to anyone. There is no need to be creative or artistic in order to apprehend art as a communicative force to speak to people. We live in a world of consumption and relation, the majority of issues are either worth paying attention to or heard by someone who can relate to it. When there is enough passion behind it, people will hear the message.

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Karly B

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