Miss Vice

In 1950, while Americans were bestowing titles such as 'Miss Potato Chip' or 'Miss Typical Teen' on young women, the French elected a 'Miss Vice'.

Chicago Tribune - July 3, 1950

The winner was 17-year-old Diane Erdos. Some details from the NY Daily News (Jun 25, 1950):

Diane won her title at Cave Tabou, rendezvous of the Existentialists, a year ago, after she put up an awful howl at being eliminated from a contest for the title of "Miss Virtue of Paris." Writer Boris Vian, the promoter, staged a Miss Vice contest to give her another chance.

The sexy brunette showed up with a costume made of three rather small pieces of newspaper — and won hands down over eight other contestants. The selection was popular. The crowd in the smoke-filled Cave Tabou congratulated Diane so enthusiastically that she lost her clippings and was carried unadorned on the shoulders of her admirers until the cops rescued her with a voluminous cape.

NY Daily News - June 25, 1950

Miss Vice, who was the daughter of a wealthy industrialist, was soon after arrested for trying to blackmail one of her father's friends, threatening to tell the police that he was trafficking cocaine and illegally exporting ball bearings to countries behind the Iron Curtain.

When arrested, she confessed, saying, "I wanted the money to travel around the country and teach Existentialism to the youth of France. I intended to reveal my body in the interests of this new religion, so the sensation would bring me big audiences of young people to hear about M. Sartre's new philosophy."
     Posted By: Alex - Wed Sep 01, 2021
     Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests | Philosophy | Ethics and Morals | 1950s

Surely innocent hijinks for the time and place, but I shudder to think how merely being in the club that night would come back to haunt a public figure in America. A nude minor being lifted by older men . . . many careers have been ruined by far less.
Posted by Phideaux on 09/01/21 at 11:09 AM
One may go so far to say that being arrested is a badge of merit for any prevailing 'Miss Vice'.
Vive la France!

Posted by Jessica on 09/01/21 at 11:52 AM
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