Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

Barbie doll Contreversy

Since 1959, Barbie dolls have been one of the top selling toys of all time. According to Tanya Lee Stone’s book “the good, the bad, the Barbie” girls can chose to act out one or more of Barbies 150 careers, over 200 styles of clothing and over one million pairs of shoes (63). This lets young girls be creative and learn women can do anything men can do. Although this may seem like the perfect doll on the outside, deep within Barbie have had some pretty bad controversies. One very well known one is the size of her breasts, hips, and waist. If Barbie were life-size, her measurements would be a girl with a 39” chest, 19” waist and a 36” hips (Stone 48). Many women groups feel that young girls will develop anorexia from wanting to be that doll (the pros and cons of Barbie and her extreme effect on society). Although many women feel Barbie is some sort of role model. Either way, Playing with Barbie dolls are good for young girls because it teaches them that women can do anything men can do for Barbies 150 careers, shows good role playing, and let’s young girls be creative for Barbies 200 outfits and 1 million pairs of shoes.
Barbie dolls are good for young girls because first off, she shows young girls that women can do anything men can do by focusing hard and believing in your self. Based on Tanya Lee Stone’s book, “the Good, the Bad, the Barbie” Barbie has experienced over 150 careers including teacher, veterinarian, surgeon, doctor, and astronaut which only men were allowed to do until around the 1920’s (98). Also, when the one of the biggest protest in 1963, it would be common for the women to give Barbie dolls to their children in protest of equal pay to men and women (Hello, Dolly). However, when “talking Barbie” came out with four random sayings one happened to utter “Math is tough” followed by “let’s go shopping” women groups around the country found it degrading and horrible for women can be just as smart as men. Mattel quickly changed it to “Math is tough, but not impossible” but the nickname “dumb blond” stuck. If Barbie were that stupid, she wouldn’t have later on become president, doctor, or astronaut and attend college (The pro’s and cons of Barbie and her extreme effects on society). About ten years later, the song “Barbie girl” came out saying “be who you want to be… if you want to be” gave many parents mixed feelings for it showed some women don’t have as many choices so they don’t get as much. Meanwhile, others believe you have a choice and you get to choose. Either way, more women go to college then men by 10% based on a recent study done by a women’s group at Northwestern University.
Next, Playing with Barbie dolls can also help show good role-playing, which will help them when they are older to make the right decision. As said in the book “the Good, the Bad, and the Barbie” by Tanya Lee Stone, shows that after a large study, eight out of ten women found that their career choice was based on their younger years playing with Barbie (112). Although on the other hand, many parents feel that the doll looks too perfect and would convince their kids that being skinny and white was the only way to be happy in life (Hello, Dolly). Meanwhile, the young girls that were interviewed said that someone close telling them that they were fat and ugly would effect them more then a silly doll (stone, 67). Barbie gives mixed feelings to everyone, but one big effect was how at a local newspaper in Cleveland, Ohio said that the new Barbie movie helped many children learn the right choices when the bully went up to Skipper and asked her to shoplift, but she said no because she remembered Barbie told her to do what is right. Many of the dolls have children trying to act out something their dolls showed them. One very major one was when the doll “Growing up Skipper” which led to a mere twist of the shoulders to increase her bust size. Many children were seen disappointed.
Lastly, Barbie dolls have been seen to be these racist and sexist toys to many critics, but one real idea Barbie tells is to be creative. Her saying “be who you want to be” shows many young girls that you can be who ever you want to be if you try and believe in yourself (Stone, 45). Since there have been over 200 styles of clothing and over 1 million pairs of shoes created girls have more choices then they can imagine (the pros and cons of Barbie and her extreme effect on society). These choices can be great, if use them right way. Based on the studies shown in the book “the good, the bad, and the Barbie” the odds of looking like Barbie are 1 in 100,000 while ken is 1 in 250, but Cynthia Jackson has gone through numerous surgeries for this to happen (92). Even if you don’t play with Barbie’s or use them in a destructive way, they have been used for art pieces like Queen-size Barb and necklace of smiles, which was entirely made of Barbie parts. Also famous artists including Deborah Colotti and Andy Warhol pieces were included in a museum, dedicated to Barbie’s history (Stone, 125).
Finally, Playing with Barbie dolls are good for young girls because it gives them career options, let’s them figure out right from wrong, and teaches girls how to be creative. Since Barbie has been so popular for so long, she will never lose her pros and cons, whether it’s about Barbie’s style choices, if she shows a bad image of life on kids, or makes young girls want her body and life, she is still a piece of plastic with a face and will always be a piece of plastic with a face.



Join the Discussion


This article has 1 comment. Post your own!

EHEH said...
May 8, 2013 at 2:02 pm:
I was about to read this and then saw the title was spelled incorrectly........ eesh
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
Site Feedback