France’s Clémence Botino to pay tribute to Josephine Baker through national costume at Miss Universe 2021

23 Nov 2021 | Priya Bhardwaj

Miss Universe France 2021 Clemence Botino is all set to raise her country’s flag high at the 70th edition of Miss Universe, to be held in a few weeks in Israel. While she is preparing for her departure, the stunning beauty has revealed her national costume which will pay a tribute to American born-French legend Josephine Baker.

Josephine was not just an entertainer but a French resistance agent and civil rights activist. While she was an American by birth, her activism was mainly centered in Europe, mainly in her adopted country, France. Gaining popularity, Josephine was the first black woman to star in a major motion picture, the 1927 silent film ‘Siren of the Tropics’.

Like other Black American artists at the time, she moved to France to escape racist discrimination in America. However, she never stopped campaigning for civil rights as she was the only woman to address the March on Washington in 1963, taking the microphone after Martin Luther King had given his iconic ‘I have a dream’ speech.


France’s Cle´mence Botino to pay tribute to Josephine Baker through national costume at Miss Universe 2021


While her advocacy gained her popularity, there is another instance which made her an icon in France. With her motto of ‘there is only one race’, Baker adopted 12 children from across the world to live with her in her French chateau, which she later tried to turn into a Global Village. She said, "We all have the same heart, the same blood, and the same need for love.”

Later this month, Josephine will become the first Black woman to enter the Pantheon in Paris, the mausoleum reserved for France´s ‘great men’. Her adopted country is honouring her 46 years after her death, not only as an entertainer but also as a French hero, civil rights activist and a diversity pioneer who created her own multiracial family.

With such an inspirational life journey, Clemence seems to have taken the right opportunity to pay a tribute to Josephine through her national costume. Miss Universe 2021 will be held on 12th December 2021 in Israel where Andrea Meza of Mexico will crown her successor at the end of the event finale.