This is my response to a protest which has gone viral online from a five year-old girl who objects to all of the dumb pink toys for girls and the blue smart toys for boys. Sorry fellow doll collectors, if I were the parent of a girl I'd have to agree. Yes, fashion dolls have careers, but it's never Explained how they Got those careers. Barbie may be an astronaut or run for President, but what was her life like Before she attained these heights? I thought little girls wouldn't care, but evidently at least One young girl Does. So I sent an E-mail to the BBC commenting on what she had to say.
Please count this as a post for tomorrow. Unless something comes up about which I Need to write, I'm taking the day off!
When I was a kid the space program was a big thing. We weren't rich, but I had fun
playing with plastic rocket ships and wooden blocks of differing shapes. I built
cool things like arches and fire places with the blocks. Also, I enjoyed plastic
But now that toys are more common and kids are mostly urban dwellers the classy toys
are more expensive, Usually. For parents with the money there are the Karito Kids
which get children involved in playing with Smart girls (the dolls) Reading, (books
which come with them) and Giving, via an interactive website. Less well sculpted
the Hearts for Hearts dolls are less expensive and also Smart. They have interesting
stories and an interactive website where kids can learn about how people live in
other countries. Of course their are also the American Girl Historical Character
dolls, which come with Books about the character. And there are the Vanange dolls,
coming from places rarely studied, like the Domenican Republic, Seychelle Islands,
and the Philipines, as well as European countries and the U.S. Each comes with
a poster book, and some of them meet one another.
If one has the money, who Needs Barbie sized fashion dolls? The dolls I am referring
to solve mysteries, one wants to be a panda expert at the zoo, another has to move
from the Domenican Republic to the Seychelle Islands where her father is a marine
biologist, (she must learn a new culture and language) and many of the Karito Kids
visit other countries in their part of the world. The doll from Mexico visits Argentina
and Brazil. The doll from China visits Japan, etc.
For parents with less money there are craft project books, the "Hearts for Hearts"
dolls, and books to read! Blocksand other building sets are still a good idea for
girls as well as boys. There are intelligent art projects and toys available online
and in educational stores as well as beautiful puzzles.
Even the Toys'r-Us Journey Girl dolls have personalities, a creative parent can make
up and write a history based on them. For instance, the African American doll Taryn
wants to play jazz in New Orleans. Ok, what instrument does she want to play? Does
she has to work at playing several before she finds the right one for her? Has she
ever Been to New Orleans? If so, what was it like in her opinion? If not, what
made her decide she wants to go There instead of somewhere else? How did she come
to like jazz at such a young age (she is supposed to be ten) anyway? Does she like
creole or cajun food? Has she ever eaten either? etc.