Mr. Gay China Wins Prize in Worldwide Pageant
Xiaodai Muyi (photo courtesy of Worldwide Mr. Gay)
Following up on the saga that unfolded last month over the Mr. Gay China pageant, it turns out that after the pageant had been shut down by the Beijing police, the organizers of the event went ahead and sent a delegate to the Worldwide Mr. Gay competition in Oslo, Norway. The delegate went on to finish third runner up in the competition, which concluded February 14.
In an added twist, the delegate, Xiaodai Muyi, is a 25 year old Chinese Muslim from Xinjiang province. Xinjiang has long experienced social turmoil between ethnic Han and Muslim Chinese, that exploded into deadly riots last summer.
According to a report published by AFP, Xiaodai runs an AIDS prevention organisation in Urumqi, the capital of China’s restive Xinjiang region. In a New York Times article, he states, “”Organizing gay events in Xinjiang is much harder than in Beijing… because it is against religion.”
“I’m scared to go back to Urumqi, not for myself but I’m scared that it will impact my organisation. If the organisation can’t continue its work, that will be no good,” he told AFP by phone from Beijing, where he is currently staying.
For more on the history and social issues concerning queer culture in China, check out the documentary Queer China, âˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨Ã€ÃºComrade China’ by Cui Zi’en.