preview

Barbie: Her Intentions and Her Impact

analytical Essay
1007 words
1007 words
bookmark

Barbie, an American icon that was a product of the Mattel Company, revolutionized the lives of young girls and women for many decades. The creation of Barbie, meant for many young girls the opportunity to have choices during a time when women were limited. Although, Barbie has long been criticized for being associated with domesticity and her appearance among many other things, she is nonetheless an iconic figure in American History. As a female who grew up playing with Barbie dolls, for many people like myself, she was more than a toy, she was an influence that many woman have tried to emulate because she was an innovate figure in the 1960s and has continued to be well into today. The intention of this paper is to examine what were the intentions of Barbie doll creator Ruth Handler when the doll debuted in 1959 as well as the magnitude of Barbie’s impact on women and women’s history. Ruth Handler, the creator of the Barbie doll conceived the idea of creating a doll after a family trip to Europe where she discovered an adult doll that was a German sex toy. Once she returned to the United States she made a discovery in regards to the toys of young girls saying as quote” I saw these little girls playing grown up and knew that the only dolls available on the market were baby dolls where the child is limited to playing mommy, or toddler or companion dolls where the child is limited to playing with a girlfriend; there was no adult doll with which a child could truly dream her dreams in the early fifties” (Piche). Hence the Barbie doll made its debut through her company Mattel in March of 1959 it not only revolutionized the way women thought of themselves but caused controversy because it did not directly encourage domesticity. When Barbie made her debut in 1959, “she wore a black-and-white striped one-piece bathing suit, black heels, white sunglasses and too much eyeliner

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes how barbie, an american icon, revolutionized the lives of young girls and women for many decades.
  • Explains that the barbie doll revolutionized the way women thought of themselves and caused controversy because it did not directly encourage domesticity.
  • Analyzes how barbie was a symbol of self-sufficiency and independence in the 1950s and 1960s.
  • Analyzes how the barbie doll has impacted the lives of many different generations of women. it contradicted the idea of true womanhood because it encouraged women to take care of themselves and seek various kinds of careers.
  • Explains that barbie is the woman excluded from the world of work with its attendant sense of achievement, to live a life based on leisure activities, personal appearance, accumulation of possessions, and the search for popularity.
  • Analyzes johansen, michele, "the evolution of working women: what barbie has taught us." atom.
  • Explains motz, marilyn f., "seen through the rose tinted glass." popular culture.
  • Analyzes briana piche's "the intentions behind the creation of barbie". illinois wesleyan university, 2009.
  • Analyzes shannon, jacqueline, "primary sources: ruth handler: staying home wasn't in my makeup."
Get Access