Was I wrong to watch Miss World with my daughter?

This mum loved it when she was growing up - but is it time to move on from the beauty pageants?


I’m not quite sure how it happened – but I know it was on a particularly rainy Saturday a few weeks ago, when we’d decided to have a ‘home day’.


A quick spot of channel-hopping and before I knew it I’d landed on Miss World.

Now, the first thought for me was of nostalgia. I watched it as a young girl and loved it – I’d choose my favourite contestant at the beginning and was delighted if she got the crown ? ? ?

And the dresses, oooooohhhhh the dresses ??

Within minutes, my husband was sitting alongside me and our 5-year-old daughter on the sofa and quickly we decided who we each wanted to win.

We’d come in halfway through but watched a couple of dress changes and stayed to see to see if ‘our girl’ had won (none of us made the top 3).

A couple of weeks later I mentioned in passing to a couple of friends that we’d seen it.

One had the gleam of childhood memories in her eyes as she said: “I used to love Miss World!”

Another looked unimpressed and commented: “Doesn’t Donald Trump own the rights to that now?”

To be honest, I’d never given a second thought about the wrongs and rights of watching it – we were enjoying the glamour of it all and it had passed the time on a miserable day just fine.

But seeing as there seems to be a headline pretty much every week about the harm we’re doing our kids when we gender stereotype – remember the fuss over Morrisons’ ‘sexist’ t-shirts? – should we be more careful to avoid anything that might perpetuate the gender divide?

After all, it seems that gender neutral is the way ahead – just recently retail giants John Lewis announced they’ve ditched girls and boys labels in their clothes.

Perhaps contests like Miss World help prop up the notion that a girl’s greatest virtues are to be agreeable and beautiful above all else.

Or maybe, just maybe, it’s just about the dresses and the hair and is simply a bit of family fun (if you don’t take it too seriously).

What do you think?

Do you think Miss World has had its day – or is it just a bit of lighthearted fun you can watch with the kids? Tell us in the comments below or over on Facebook

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