Since 1921, the Miss America Pageant has evolved into a national tradition which has played a pivotal role in defining the ideal American woman. As such, it has become a barometer of the nation’s shifting ideas about gender norms and expectations. In 1968, the New Jersey institution became a national platform for debates and protests about sexism and racism when feminist organizations picketed the Atlantic City Convention Center where the Miss America Pageant was held – an event that brought national attention to the emerging Women’s Liberation Movement.

Miss America. NJ350