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I am doing a research paper for my Communications course (Children, Media and Culture) on Barbie and her role played in feminist critics. I would greatly appreciate any information you could send or recommendations as too where to look further. - Winnie

Thanks for your note to FEMINIST.COM. As a feminist, I can offer that I am a fan of Barbie--or rather, I think that Barbie played a big role in my life. I actually escaped via Barbie--meaning that when I played with Barbie I let my imagination run wild about her life. It was fun--it was freedom. That said, I have mixed feelings about her role. As feminists we can't ignore that girls are still drawn immediately to Barbie--and she continues to impact their lives. Therefore, we can't fight against her, but help to politicize her. Although Barbie has been "radicalized" in her own little world--we now have "dentist Barbie" and Native American Barbie, these still aren't the ones jumping off the shelves. Progress is always slow, but I do have faith that we are getting there. However, there is also the reality that Barbie isn't real--she's a doll and she creates an unrealistic standard against which girls measure themselves. We have to change that.

That's really nothing more than my opinion, but I hope it helps. You also might want to reference a recently released anthology "Adios Barbie" edited by Ophira Edut. Though the content is "body image" not solely "Barbie" she certainly is mentioned in the book.


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