For literally decades, Adios Barbie has been calling for more frequent and accurate representation of people who don’t fit the Eurocentric ideal of Barbie not just in the media, but in toy aisles as well. Today Barbie has announced it is releasing its new Fashionista line featuring three new body types: petite, curvy, and tall.
In addition to the new skin tones and hair textures introduced last year, Barbie announced today that its Fashionista line will offer three new body types: tall, petite and curvy. The dolls are reported to have eight different skin tones, 23 hair colors, 22 hair styles, 14 facial “sculpts” (as The Daily Mail puts it) and 18 eye colors.
1) Um…all of the above.
2) This move by Mattel signals a huge shift not only in our culture’s shifting perceptions around physical beauty, but also in the way dolls in general are manufactured and marketed to girls. It’s a huge break from the status quo for Barbie, an old school company that has insisted on promoting a singular ideal of physical beauty based on thin, white, blond, and blue eyed Eurocentric traits in addition to an unattainable body ideal. An ideal that has been proven to impact the self-esteem and body image of girls, especially girls of color.
3) It has tall girls! And petite ones as well. Often left out of the body image conversation that is often limited to size as it relates to body fat. These dolls are addressing the alienation many girls and women feel around being taller (or shorter) than average.
4) No more exoticization! Yes Barbie has released a line of Black dolls and Asian dolls but more often than not they perpetuate the stereotypes of the hypersexualized and objectified “other.”
1) The dolls still are confined to Marilyn Monroe and Kim Kardashian bust-waist-hip ratios that reflect the stereotypically “attractive” and sexy hour glass.
2) Unlike the awesome Lammily doll, the new more diverse body types are still not reflective of a real human body proportions.
– See more at: http://www.adiosbarbie.com/2011/07/dolls-it-matters-if-youre-black-or-white/#sthash.AKIlYsHY.dpuf