In the city of Salvador, the capital of “Black Bahia”, contestants prepare for the third annual ‘Miss and Mister Guetto’ contest to be held on September 15

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In the city of Salvador, Bahia, contestants prepare for the third annual of ‘Miss and Mister Guetto’ to be held on September 15

By Marques Travae

The city of Salvador, located in the northeastern state of Bahia, has always been defined by its large black population and the strong elements of African/black culture that have attracted tourists from both other parts of Brazil as well as other countries around the world. It has been estimated that 75-80% of the population of both the city and the state is composed of African descendants. As such, one might ask why it would necessary that the city and state play host to specifically black events when the vast majority of the state is already black.

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The answer, in my view, would that precisely because of the fact that there are so many black people in Bahia, in an effort to whiten the appearance of an undeniably black state like Bahia in a manner similar to efforts promoted around Brazil as a whole, the power structure, particularly the media and advertising industry, goes out its way to de-negrify the region. We’ve seen numerous examples of this.

It was evident in a controversial beauty contest back in 2014 in which about 75% of the contestants hardly looked black. Then there are the annual Carnaval celebrations in which white artists are given more prime time coverage and attract more sponsorships than the black artists. Then we had the most recent example of the Globo TV novela Segundo Sol, which is set in Salvador, Bahia, but features mostly white characters/actors in the cast.

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For this reason, even in Bahia, it is still necessary to have events that cater to a specifically black public. Such is the case of the upcoming 3rd edition of the Miss and Mister Guetto (ghetto) competition that will take place on September 15th. The contest will feature 12 male and 12 female contestants who will show off their grace, beauty, elegance and congeniality to earn the favor of judges in competing for the victory sash. The current Mister and Miss Guetto, Joseã Santos and Leilane Paim will crown the winners of the 2018 edition.

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Bagagery Spilberg will host the event that will present prizes to the top three male and female selections of the contest, with models showing off the spring/summer collection of the GRV Modas fashion collection.

“Salvador has many raw gems that are just waiting for a good eye and a polish to appear in parades, photos and TV commercials. It’s in this area that the Xtreme Model enters and through the contests that it makes and the inscriptions via the site making the models available,” said Jomar Sousa, creator of the contest.

About Marques Travae 2895 Articles
Marques Travae. For more on the creator and editor of BLACK WOMEN OF BRAZIL, see the interview here.

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