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Volume 2, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 2044-2823
  • E-ISSN: 2044-2831



This article explores how ABC’s fashion magazine set Ugly Betty (Ventanarosa/Reveille Productions, 2006–2010) makes a camp challenge to the ethnic- and class-based constructions of Latinness in mainstream media. It argues that the series’ progressiveness lies in its self conscious ‘makeover’ of both the original telenovela and the character of Betty. In the series Betty’s ‘ugliness’ is shown to be the product of not just aesthetics but also class and ethnographic discourses. This article traces the origins of the cultural, class-based and racial norms of beauty that Betty plays with exploring how these are mapped onto Betty’s body in the first two seasons. It looks at how these beauty norms connect to contemporary notions of social mobility that are increasingly prominent in the third and final fourth season of the series.


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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): beauty; camp aesthetics; class; race; the body; Ugly Betty
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