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From “The New York Times“, I’m Natalie Kitroeff. This is “The Daily“.
This weekend with Hollywood in turmoil over declining ticket sales and a massive labor strike, all eyes are turning to “Barbie“, a new film that is trying to pull off a seemingly impossible task. That task is to take a doll best known for reinforcing conventional stereotypes of women and somehow rebranded as a symbol of feminism, all without coming off as a shameless ad for the dolls maker Mattel. Today, journalist Willa Paskin on her conversation with the film’s director Greta Gerwig about how she approached that challenge and why America remains so endlessly fascinated by Barbie.
It’s Friday, July 21st.
Willa, you wrote about Barbie and the making of “Barbie” the film for “The New York Times Magazine“, which is what we’re here to talk about. But just to start, talk to me about your relationship to Barbie.
I wish that I could say that I had a really intimate relationship with Barbie or a sort of profound one, but I don’t really. I played with Barbies when I was a kid, but I can’t say that they were like particularly memorable. They were just one of many dolls. I probably have thought about them more as a parent than I ever did as a child.
Why more as a mother? I’m not yet a mom, but I’m going to be soon, and so this could be useful for me.
Yeah. I have found that when it comes to Barbies resistance is sort of futile. Like, I did not buy any Barbies and that was sort of intentional. And yet, there are I think over a dozen Barbies in our house now. Like, other people have purchased them and they’ve wandered into the house. I think the statistic is something like 90 percent of 3 to 10-year-old girls own a Barbie. And in America, 3 to 6-year-old girls on average they have 12 each.
Yeah. I think this is like the thing about Barbie is like —
(SINGING) Barbie and Rocko. Rocking out with Tony in the —
You cannot escape Barbie. And there’s an element of that was true even before the movie. Like —
(SINGING) I’m happy. I’m Barbie. The feeling is growing in me.
Barbie is a doll that has existed for way, way, way, way longer than most dolls for over 60 years. And she’s really like embedded in lots of really important ways, we think about girlhood and womanhood.
(SINGING) We, girls, can do anything like Barbie.
So Barbie is also in my house. I think I don’t know if it had just been up to me that I would have let her in, but I decided it was worse to make a deal out of it. And so my kids play with Barbie.
It sounds like that this is maybe something you’re not altogether overjoyed about, but it’s inevitable. So why invite more Barbie into your life? What seemed interesting to you, Willa, about writing about “Barbie” the film?
Well, I mean, I was interested in all of these feelings about Barbie that I have, and that I think actually a lot of people have, and also how that plays into making a movie about Barbie, which is this huge piece of IP. IP stands for Intellectual Property. And it’s basically all Hollywood does now, which is to take something that people know already exists and make a movie about it.
Everything has to be presold. It has to be a Marvel character. It has to be some other toy. And I think with most of those products or those movies, the thing that’s compelling about it is everybody knows them and lots of people love them, right? And the thing about Barbie that’s sort of interesting is that everybody knows Barbie, but not everybody loves Barbie. Like, Barbie comes with a lot of baggage. So there are absolutely people that love her, but there are people who hate her. And I was just really interested in like why you’d make a movie like that, and how do you make a huge blockbuster entertainment that’s about something that people have such complicated feelings about.
OK. So let’s talk about those feelings. Where should we start in talking about the complications of Barbie?
Well, I think this goes right to Barbie’s origin. So Barbie was created by Ruth Handler, who was a Jewish businesswoman who already co-owned a toy company with her husband Elliot that was called Mattel that was founded in 1945. And sort of the story, like the origin story of Barbie is that she was sitting in a room eavesdropping listening in on her daughter, Barbara, who was named Barbie, playing with paper dolls with a friend. And they were just spending hours and hours putting these dolls in different outfits and thinking about their futures and careers, and just sort of like imagining them as grown women.
And she realized that there was not a three dimensional doll that let girls do the same. There was basically only baby dolls that encourage them to practice being moms. And Ruth Handler was a businesswoman in 1945.
She’s talked about not like loving, being a housewife. And I think she sort of was like we should make this doll that lets girls explore all the different ways that they can be adults, adult women that isn’t just motherhood. So the story also goes that she was in Switzerland on a trip, family trip. And she came across this doll that’s called the Build Lily. And it looks a ton like a Barbie because Barbie was modeled on it. And it was at the time this sort of doll that was based on a character in a German comic strip who was sort of like a slattern, like a promiscuous harlot.
And this doll was sort of meant — it was like an accessory for grown men, like it was —
One of the things they could do was have in their car, sort of like Playboy silhouette mudflaps. And she saw this doll that sort of had this “Va Va Voom” figure but was sort of the right proportions to dress and bought three, one for her daughter and two for her, and sort of took it back to California as a proof of concept. And the doll came out in 1959 and basically became a hit right away.
- archived recording 1
(SINGING) Barbie, you’re beautiful. You make me feel my Barbie doll is really real.
If I’m getting this right, Barbie is the brainchild of a female executive who made the doll after hearing her daughter imagining the careers of her paper dolls. But this doll, Barbie, is based on a sexy blonde German comic strip character? It’s just — there are a few contradictions there.
Right. The contradictions are baked right in. They never end. And they run all through the 1960s. So —
- archived recording 2
What’s going on here?
- archived recording 3
- archived recording 2
Right. Now Mattel’s famous Barbie has a brand new dream house.
In the 1960s, you see things like Barbie gets a dream house.
- archived recording 2
And even a sliding door that really opens.
And she gets a dream house in 1962, when women couldn’t — it was very rare for women to be able to get credit cards and their own mortgages.
- archived recording 4
Have you heard what’s happened? Barbie’s changed.
And she goes to the moon as an astronaut before Neil Armstrong ever goes to the moon. So all those things are happening. And then, at the same time, there’s a Slumber Party Barbie that comes out in the mid-1960s. And she comes with a scale that’s stuck at 110 pounds and a book called “How to Lose Weight,” and the instructions are literally just don’t eat.
And also going with that is sort of the impossible proportions, this idea that she couldn’t really stand because her breasts are too big. Her head couldn’t be held up because her neck is too slender. Her liver couldn’t fit inside of her body.
If this person were embodied, she couldn’t be, because it’s impossible to look like Barbie. And this is sort of what we are giving to little girls to play with and holding up as this model of what they can be when they grow up.
Yeah, you have all these kind of awful stereotypes and standards about women and their bodies kind of baked into this doll while also having her occupy the Oval Office.
- archived recording 5
(SINGING) Superstar Barbie.
You know, so by the 1970s, when the feminist movement is really taking off, this sort of critique of Barbie solidifies as just, like, no, this is everything society and men want us to be, this sort of glammed-up, male-gaze-ready, hot-to-trot, blonde, thin, high-heeled woman.
- archived recording 6
The Superstar Barbie Doll comes with necklace, earrings, ring, shoes, and gown.
And women are so much more than that. This is so limiting. There’s a march in 1970, an equity march. And women are marching saying, like, we are not a Barbie doll.
How did Mattel respond to all this feminist critique?
I mean, I think they basically sort of brushed it aside. There were some minor changes, like in the early ‘70s, Barbie initially always — her eyes had been sort of downcast and to the side. And in the early ‘70s, she starts to look out at you. She becomes a subject, not an object, which is tied to the existence of the feminist movement, I think, even if they wouldn’t have said that.
But basically, they just continued. The doll kept selling. They just didn’t have to take it seriously. They were the only doll like this on the market.
Barbie was just sort of indomitable. And that continued into the 2000s. And then, basically, in the 2000s, the contradictions that were always inherent in Barbie sort of became unsustainable.
What you start to see initially is the existence of their first real competitor, which were Bratz dolls. Barbie just sort of started to lose its footing. And by the mid-2010s, it was actually very dire. Mattel’s own research about it was really bad.
People thought the doll was vapid, didn’t stand for anything. They saw that mothers weren’t comfortable giving Barbies as birthday presents. And a birthday present is supposed to be a reflection of your values, and moms were feeling uncomfortable mirroring Barbie.
And then there’s this other really incredible anecdote, which is that there was a study, not done by Mattel, that found that when little girls played with Barbies, they thought themselves less capable of a number of careers than they did after playing with a Mrs. Potato Head, who was the control in the study.
So Barbie’s association with a very particular way of being a woman started to sort of be a problem for them in a way that had been lurking for decades but sort of really came to the surface. In a way, I think they were actually, for the first time, existentially worried about the future of the doll.
So what does Mattel do about this existential threat?
They change. They realize they have to change. In 2015, they start to roll out a lot of different Barbies. They roll out more than 100 different hairs and skin colors, and they make Barbie’s feet flat.
And then, in 2016, they start to — they release three different-shaped Barbies, like a curvy Barbie, a petite Barbie, a tall Barbie. They release Barbies based on feminist trailblazers. So you have a Billie Jean King Barbie and a Rosa Parks Barbie.
So all of these changes put Barbie on better footing. But Mattel, the parent company, was still really struggling. Mattel is a huge company. They own a lot of different toy brands. Fisher-Price is them, Hot Wheels. There’s a lot of toys that Mattel makes.
And in the mid-2010s, they were really struggling. And by 2018, they’d gone through three CEOs. They had lost half a billion dollars.
And it’s at that point that they hired a man named Ynon Kreiz, who is a Israeli-born businessman whose background is not in toys but is in entertainment. And crucially to the existence of the Barbie movie, he had a very straightforward plan for what to do, which is basically cut costs and sort out the back end of what was going on at Mattel, and also to stop thinking about themselves as a manufacturing company and to think about themselves instead as an IP company that manages franchises.
So to answer this fundamental question that you’ve asked, which is why make a Barbie movie, this is kind of it. Mattel is trying to pivot into becoming a company that is about selling their IP. And they also need a brand reinvention. They want to try to sell Barbie to 2023 women.
Yeah. I mean, I should say here that Mattel had been trying to make a Barbie movie since 2009. But because Barbie is this contradictory character that people have strong feelings about, they kind of knew they had to thread this needle, where it’s like you can’t do a satire of Barbie, because that’s not going to sell Barbie.
But you kind of can’t just also do the propaganda Barbie because they couldn’t have it be boring. So they had to kind of figure out something slightly outside the box. And also, because of Barbie’s baggage, they needed a woman to do it. They needed a woman with credibility to do it.
And so about six weeks into his new tenure as CEO, Ynon Kreiz took a meeting with Margot Robbie, the actress who had been keeping an eye on the Barbie rights for a long time and had a relationship with Warner Brothers. And they had a meeting, and they decided they wanted to make “Barbie.” And they put together a short list of directors that they wanted to do it. And at the top of it was the director Greta Gerwig.
And why Greta Gerwig?
Well, so Greta Gerwig became known to the American public at large as an actress.
- archived recording 7
Patch is the kind of guy who buys a black leather couch and is like, I love it.
She was originally in a set of movies that are sort of goofily called mumblecore movies, but are sort of smaller, independent, realistic, chatty, slice-of-life movies. And she kind of had her breakout in a movie that she made with her partner, Noah Baumbach, called “Frances Ha.”
- archived recording 8
It’s so funny when people have kids and they’re all, I used to be so focused on me, and now I’m totally not. It’s like, no. It’s still you. It’s half you. It’s a mini-you. I mean, you made it.
She had became a director in 2017 with “Ladybird”—
- archived recording 9
- archived recording 10
Is that your given name?
- archived recording 9
- archived recording 10
Why is it in quotes?
- archived recording 9
Well, I gave it to myself. It’s given to me by me.
- archived recording 10
— a great movie that was sort of based on her coming of age in Sacramento that was nominated for Oscars. And then she sort of leveled up and did an adaptation of “Little Women,” which was also really well received.
- archived recording 11
And if I had my own money, which I don’t, that money would belong to my husband the moment we got married. And if we had children, they would be his, not mine. They would be his property. So don’t sit there and tell me that marriage isn’t an economic proposition, because it is.
So she’s this really smart, creative person with Oscar nominations and indie credentials and feminist credentials. And they approached her about doing the Barbie movie.
So I can understand why Mattel would want to have this smart, Oscar-nominated, female director make this movie. But my question is, why would this young, Oscar-nominated indie filmmaker who is seen as someone who makes movies about women’s voices in a kind of 2023 way, why would she want to make a movie about Barbie?
Natalie, that is exactly what I wanted to know. And so when I met up with her, that’s what I got to ask her.
We’ll be right back.
Willa, tell us about this meeting with Greta Gerwig and why she decided to make this movie.
Sure. So I met Greta at a production studio in Midtown Manhattan.
- willa paskin
But we can keep going right now, too. If you don’t mind, I just don’t want to —
And we sort of just sat at a table in a nice office space. I actually had brought some Barbies of my children’s as props. I thought maybe something interesting would happen.
And I started with where you sort of start right, which is —
- willa paskin
Did you play with them when you were little?
— what’s your relationship to Barbie? And Gerwig grew up in Sacramento, and she loved dolls.
- greta gerwig
I loved dolls in general, and I did love Barbie.
She has a sort of sense memory of standing in a Toys-R-Us beholding Barbies.
- greta gerwig
And there was something about that really big boxes meant a really big dress with really big hair. I loved looking at them.
She played with them. She says it was too late, like, until she was about 14.
- greta gerwig
Because I knew because people were already drinking at parties, and I was like, you are not cool. I remember what it was like to kind of begin to go through puberty. And suddenly dolls are not magical anymore, and everything about you feels wrong. And I thought —
And at the same time, she was also aware of the critique of Barbie because her mother was not wild about Barbies for all of the feminist reasons we’ve already discussed. So most of them just sort of crept into the house, as Barbies have a tendency to do, as hand-me-downs.
So Greta’s mom may be a skeptic. But Greta is enamored with them. She’s a fan.
I mean, I think it’s complicated. I think she will tell you that she loves Barbie, but I don’t think it’s because she can’t see that there’s complications to Barbie. And I think it was actually that Barbie is this contradictory, complex symbol that is what interested her.
So obviously, she had to feel warmly enough about the doll for Mattel to feel comfortable having her do this. They’re not signing their prize property over to just someone who’s going to tear it apart. But it’s not that she doesn’t understand that there’s a complex conversation that’s been going on about Barbie for a long time.
I mean, she said to me, like, people ask, what’s the story about Barbie? And the story about Barbie is the fight that we’ve been having about Barbie. I don’t think that wasn’t important to her.
So does that tension inform the way Greta is thinking about actually making the film?
I think so. I think she talks about Margot Robbie coming to see her.
- greta gerwig
That’s when I am going to really sit down and start trying to wrap my head around, what is this, because I —
And not knowing what it was going to be at all —
- greta gerwig
I had very much that sense of the panic of a blank canvas.
— but just knowing that it kind of needed to deal with the conflict around Barbie.
- greta gerwig
I wasn’t sure how I was going to go about it. And I started reading a lot and researching a lot about —
She ended up reading about Ruth Handler, who we talked about, who, in addition to creating Barbie, ended up having breast cancer and would go on to have two mastectomies.
- greta gerwig
And for the woman who invented Barbie to have a double mastectomy because she had breast cancer, I thought there was something so incredibly human and poignant about that, given that this is some idea of big-breasted perfection.
Something about that was a point of entry for her.
- greta gerwig
There was something quite beautiful to me of taking something that is the queen of plastic and giving her something real, or taking something that could be a corporate behemoth and making it something so tangible and homemade and personal and charming and committed and surreal and strange that it was the most satisfying flipping of it. And I suppose that felt worth it to me.
So for Greta, there’s really two things going on here that are really driving her decision to do this. The first is that she doesn’t have quite as much baggage attached to Barbie as some people do. And the second is that she really sees that, as an artist, she has the opportunity to do something interesting with Barbie.
Yeah, I think that’s right.
But, Willa, there’s also something else here too, right? I mean, making “Barbie,” the movie, this summer blockbuster, it’s obviously the chance for this filmmaker to be behind something huge.
Yeah. I mean, I think she was very matter-of-fact about that. She is consciously leveling up as a director, as an artist, as a businesswoman in Hollywood. She is very conscious that to get better at what she does and what she’s interested in, she has to keep making bigger and bigger movies so that she has more expertise and more experience.
This movie has a $100 million bigger budget than “Little Women,” which had double the budget of “Ladybird.” And also, the thing is Gerwig has described this as like a both/and kind of experience. And I think that is true, and it extends to her and Mattel, which is that their interests really genuinely aligned here.
She wanted to make a movie about this subject. She wanted it to be a big movie. And they needed somebody like her to do that. And to make that appealing, they gave her an extraordinary amount of creative freedom, which is unusual almost for any director, and particularly for a female director. They gave her just a lot of latitude with a really big project.
Can you give me a few examples of what that actually looks like, of what it looks like to have Greta Gerwig make a Barbie movie with creative freedom?
So I want to answer that question in two ways. And one is just to, say, very quickly set up the movie with as little spoilers as I possibly can. But basically, in the movie, there’s Barbieland, and there’s the real world.
And Barbieland is plastic and pink, and everything is perfect. And the real world is the real world. And through a series of mishaps, Barbie ends up in the real world and has to learn a bunch of things.
But Gerwig and her colleagues really nerded out on the granular details of Barbieland, obsessed about every detail, and really, really wanted it all to be tangible and touchable and feel like a toy, fake, but real.
- greta gerwig
— sets, and I remember we were looking at all these different panels of painted skies because I wanted everything to be authentically artificial.
And they obsessed about every detail.
- greta gerwig
Is there water? No. Is there wind? Only if it makes their hair look good. Is it —
And then there’s also, like, what does it mean, creative freedom? Someone says, you’re making a movie for Mattel and Warner Brothers. It’s a big project. There’s lots of collaborators. There’s always going to be notes and feedback. There were suggestions about scenes that would be cut for time.
- greta gerwig
I was like, I can’t cut that. That’s the whole thing. That’s for me.
I remember saying this to the people — the studio or someone at some point. I was like, if I cut that scene, I don’t know why I’m making this movie. If I don’t have that scene, I don’t know what it is or what I’ve done.
But my sense is that she was pleasantly puzzled and surprised by how much she was allowed to do her thing.
- greta gerwig
It’s like, use this assignment to go wild and to make something beautiful and big and anarchic. As a filmmaker, it is those moments of getting to work with an IP like Barbie that you do get the ability to make something insane — also a little bit like I was getting away with something.
And without spoilers, I’m wondering, with all this creative license that she has, does the film address all of those complications baked into Barbie that we’ve been talking about?
I mean, it certainly addresses some of them. There’s a scene in the movie where a character delivers to Barbie the entire critique of Barbie, that she’s been making women feel bad for 50 years. But I think that Gerwig was interested also in humanizing Barbie. This is sort of the slippery magic trick of the movie, which is it kind of sidesteps the extent to which Barbie might still be playing some part in making little girls feel like they have to look a certain way or be a certain size or be a certain kind of woman.
And I think the way that Gerwig sort of sidestepped that is because I think she thinks about the whole movie as almost metatextually righting the wrongs of Barbie. She talked about this explicitly. If Barbie has make people feel bad, like they’re not good enough, the only thing I could think to do was to make people feel good enough.
But obviously, that does sidestep this part of the doll, right? She has historically done this and may still be doing this, even if she’s not doing it in the movie.
And did you ask her about that sidestepping? Do you know if she did that on purpose?
I mean, I think she is very aware that she’s making a fun summer movie. And so I think she sort of was like, this isn’t supposed to be a lecture. And so she knows all of the faux pas. I think she felt like getting into every single one was sort of like pulling the whole thing down and sort of needed to be more buoyant and lithe and like a movie people want to see.
And it seems fair to say that maybe it’s too much to expect of a summer blockbuster like this to get into all of that. But at the end of the day, humanizing Barbie is also obviously hugely beneficial for Mattel, right? I mean, this kind of works out for them.
This is a rebrand of Barbie. It has us all talking about the doll. And it’s kind of sending us this message that this complicated version of Barbie that we had all of this baggage attached to is not the real story here.
Yeah. I think it’s a win-win. I think everyone at Mattel is really, really happy about the film. And I think, for people of a certain age, this idea that you can make something that would sell some other product is distasteful.
But the fact is that so many movies are that now. And additionally, Star Wars, which was based on an original idea, is that now. And so it gets harder and harder to sort of draw some hard line in the sand about what’s really icky and you shouldn’t do if you’re an artist and what you should.
And I think, basically, if you’re interested in the thing you’re making, and if, actually, it turns out 98 percent of people in the world know it and are interested in it and are going to be hyped to see what you did, those are all really compelling reasons to make something for a filmmaker now, I think, of any gender or stature.
Right. There’s a way in which she’s just making a very pragmatic decision as a young ambitious filmmaker in Hollywood right now.
Willa, you’ve been saying this has been a win-win for Greta Gerwig and for Mattel. But the movie is just about to come out. How do we know it’s a success?
So you’re totally right. I cannot see the future. I do not know how much money this movie is going to make. It is tracking to make $150 million or so, which is, like, triple what it was supposed to make even three weeks ago. And so much of that is because of just the wall-to-wall Barbie everything, which is all being driven by the movie.
I mean, it is insanely inescapable right now. It’s at Pinkberry. It’s at the Gap. I mean, it’s selling insurance. It’s selling candles. I mean, this is part of the whole plan on Mattel’s side of how this was going to work that.
It’s going to put the doll in front of everybody, but not just the doll — the whole brand. It’s going to be for people that aren’t just kids. It’s going to hugely expand its demographic appeal. And that is what they wanted to happen. And there’s always people that are going to find that eye rolling and always people who are going to want in. And this is why Barbie is powerful. She’s 60 years old, and every single person in the world knows who she is and has feelings about her. And that’s just sort of irresistible at this moment in time for everyone who makes stuff to get a piece of.
Yeah. I mean, just in making this episode, I googled Margot Robbie and Greta Gerwig. And Google turned pink and sparkly. Barbie has taken over Google.
Yes, of course it has. What hasn’t it taken over?
So this movie has kind of put Barbie back into the spotlight, into the white-hot center of things, with all of her contradictions and baggage. It sounds like you’re not going to be getting rid of your Barbies in your house anytime soon.
I mean, who could get rid of their Barbies right now? Impossible.
Willa, thanks for coming on the show.
Thanks for having me.
We’ll be right back.
Here’s what else you should know today. On Thursday, Russia launched a third day of aerial attacks on Ukraine’s ports that appeared to be aimed at crippling the country’s ability to export grain. One of the attacks destroyed 60,000 tons of grain waiting to be loaded onto ships.
The assault comes just days after Russia withdrew from a yearlong agreement that had allowed Ukraine to ship its grain to dozens of countries, despite a Russian naval blockade. The US now fears that Russia’s next target will be civilian ships carrying grain to and from Ukraine.
Today’s episode was produced by Shannon Lin, Rikki Novetsky, Michael Simon Johnson, and Summer Thomad, with help from Alex Stern. It was edited by Michael Benoist, contains original music by Elisheba Ittoop, Dan Powell, Diane Wong, and Marion Lozano, and was engineered by Alyssa Moxley. Our theme music is by Jim Brunberg and Ben Landsverk of Wonderly.
That’s it for “The Daily.” I’m Natalie Kitroeff. See you Monday.
Director Greta Gerwig, who has built a devoted following for such female-forward movies as Lady Bird and Little Women, has labeled Barbie "most certainly a feminist film."Why the Barbie doll is an icon? ›
Barbie's appearance has evolved over the decades to reflect the ideas and fashions of the times. In the 1950s she mirrored the likes of Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe, with arched eyebrows and red lips, and clothes designed by fifty of the world's top designers.What's the message in the Barbie movie? ›
The Big Picture
Greta Gerwig's Barbie defies expectations and offers powerful insights about female existence, resonating with many women. Actress America Ferrera's interview about the gendered expectations placed on women and the value of play is a revelatory truth bomb.
But Barbie fits perfectly into director Greta Gerwig's repertoire of women-focused stories, which includes two Oscar-nominated coming of age films, Ladybird (2017) and Little Women (2019). Gerwig is a feminist filmmaker whose characters are curious, transgressive and rebel against their restrictive circumstances.Does playing with dolls like Barbie negatively influence a girl's body image? ›
In a study published in the journal Developmental Psychology, girls aged 5 to 8 were exposed either to traditional Barbies, to the Emme doll (size 16) or to no dolls (control). Results indicated that these little girls exposed to Barbie had lower self esteem and poorer body image than those in the comparison groups.How is a movie feminist? ›
Instead, a feminist film is one with an agenda, a political work intended to spark thought and conversation about women's social status and the female experience. It utilizes the female gaze and explores notions of femininity, sexuality, and feminist theory.What values does Barbie represent? ›
She cites Kristin Riddick, writer of “Barbie: The Image of Us All,” who said, “Some feminists actually believe she is the symbol of female emancipation because she works and does not have to depend on men for her wealth and possessions.” “Barbie, in this reading, is both beautiful and empowered,” Wright concludes.What are the positive effects of Barbie? ›
When children create imaginary worlds and role play with dolls like Barbie, it prompts them to talk about thoughts about others' emotions and feelings. This can have positive long-lasting effects on children, building social and emotional processing social skills like empathy.What impact does Barbie have on society? ›
Unfortunately, many believe that Barbie caused what has become known as the Barbie Effect, influencing how young girls see themselves and their potential. The doll had an unnatural figure and helped shape young girls' body image (how a person sees themselves and their physical appearance).What did Barbie stand for? ›
Barbie's full name is Barbara Millicent Roberts. Barbie was named after Ruth Handler's daughter, Barbara, and Ken after her son, Kenneth.
Barbie was the brainchild of Ruth Handler co-founder (with her husband Elliot) of the toy company Mattel Inc. Inspired by watching their daughter play with make-believe paper dolls of adult... Continue reading...What was the original idea for Barbie? ›
Barbie's physical appearance was modeled on the German Bild Lilli doll, a risqué gag gift for men based upon a cartoon character featured in the West German newspaper Bild Zeitung. Since the doll's inception its body has incited controversy.Is A Doll's House about feminism? ›
A Doll's House, with its door slam heard 'round the world, is regarded by many as the beginning of modern feminist literature.Is a doll's house a feminist play or not? ›
Ibsen finalizes the play by depicting all the women characters as feminists who abandon their 'doll' lives to leave like free, significant, and responsible in their societies. Nora, Linde, among others, begin as slaves but end a feminists. This renders Ibsen's 'A Doll's House' a feminist essay.Is a doll's house a play about feminism? ›
This is not to say that Ibsen was an "arrant" feminist, nor to say that the play is only about women. But it is about women, or in that neutral sense, a feminist play, because it deals primarily with the desire of a woman to establish her identity and dignity in the society.Which Disney movie is from a feminist perspective? ›
Brave presents a strong female protagonist and a powerful plot that features the healing of a mother-daughter relationship rather than romantic love, making it worthy of feminist interpretation. Feminist criticism aims to bring to light examples of patriarchy present in media artifacts.