The “sex and the city” concept may be interpreted in a variety of ways considering racial, gender, age, social, and other factors. As a rule, such images are whitewashed and cannot be properly treated due to the existing prejudices. The example of the first black Miss America, Vanessa Williams, proves that even if the mistakes were made in the past, they can influence the present and even define the future. Still, such concepts like female sexuality, fame, the desire to achieve something and become someone in the city remain to be of the same importance and are characterized male desire to gain control over the situations, especially even these situations touch upon the women of color and their abilities to survive in spite of everything.
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The scandal swirling around Vanessa Williams is one of the examples of how people are able to mix up past, present, and future, fame and shame, nudity and beauty, power, and control. As soon as Williams became popular and proved her rights to be Miss America, regardless of the color of her skin, she faced a number of problems, threats, and necessities with defending her rights. She got to know that the “sex and the city” concept did exist and did have much power, and it was impossible to achieve success and avoid some jealousy, envy, or competition. To prove her rights, Williams had to be ready to use any possible means, her talents, and her abilities not to lose a chance to succeed.
She had to sacrifice her career as a model to avoid the consequences of her scandal with Penthouse magazine. However, it was not the end. Harris admits that “in show business, revenge is a dish best served in cold, hard numbers, and lately, Vanessa Williams has become a master chef” (par. 1). Williams demonstrated her best skills and became a famous woman in the American society as well as in the whole world, and the person, who betrayed her and tried to use her weaknesses against her, died several years ago because of his health problems proving that destiny was something that could not be avoided.
In fact, women of color face many challenges in their lives when they try to achieve success and demonstrate their talents. However, they are as challenged as all other people are regardless of their colors of skin, age, ethnicity, and social background. If people are strong enough to solve their problems and overcome the challenges, they will be ok. If people, even the “whitest” people, are weak or uncertain, they can hardly avoid the curse of the “sex and the city” idea and will be absorbed in the dust and mud of the show business world.
Respond: Women of Color and Their Place in a Society
Many people truly believe that women of color are usually treated differently in the world of show business in comparison to white women. Of course, it is possible to remember the case of Vanessa Williams and her scandal with the Penthouse representative because of her nude photos that led to the denial of the status of Miss America at the beginning of the 1980s. At the same time, the white Miss America, Tara Conner, was caught drunk and under the influence of cocaine, still, she was not deprived of her status.
On the one hand, it seems to be unfair and wrong to mix up the ideas of the competition with some cultural or racial inequalities. On the other hand, it is not clear why people do not pay attention to the time when these two cases took place. William’s scandal was in the 1980s when people had to follow a number of rules and standards and consider their correct attitudes to different social events. Conner is a model of the 21st century, where the rules and norms are beyond many people’s comprehension. Fashion causes numerous reactions, expectations vary considerably, and human ideas remain to be unclear vague and beautiful at the same time.
It seems to be wrong to believe that the reason why Trump did not dethrone Conner the way Williams was dethroned depends on Conner’s beauty, age, or race. People have to take into consideration the timing frames and the morals supported during different centuries. Of course, there are many people who are eager to delve into the details and try to find out some unpleasant and provocative explanations to the idea of racial inequalities in the world of fashion, business, etc.
However, sometimes, it is just enough to let everything go and enjoy the current results. Vanessa Williams became a popular singer and actress instead of being an ordinary model with the world name. Tara Conner’s future is hard to predict, but her present is interesting to observe. Maybe, this kind of opinion is not supported by all people; however, I want to believe that nowadays, the concepts of racial inequalities or age differences are out of the question and cannot determine the worlds of show business, fashion, or politics.
Harris, Mark. “Vanessa on Top.” Entertainment Weekly (1992). Web.