Icon Barbie and the Female Image Essay by Quality Writers

Icon Barbie and the Female Image
An examination of the impact of the concept of Barbie as the "perfect" woman.
# 100656 | 2,820 words | 7 sources | MLA | 2007 | US

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This paper examines the influence of the image of the Barbie doll on the female gender. The writer discusses Stacy Handler's (the granddaughter of the Barbie creator) struggles with weight, self-worth and social acceptance as a young female in society. It explains how many young girls have developed eating disorders while trying to emulate Barbie physically and how this has had many psychological repercussions. In its conclusion, the paper shows that until society is willing to comprehend the damage that it inflicts on children through these unrealistic expectations, the concept of Barbie as the "perfect" woman will continue to negatively impact the female gender.

From the Paper:

"The Barbie doll was introduced to the American public in 1959. The idea for the doll was conceived by Ruth Handler who, with her husband, founded the Mattel Toy Company ("Inventing"). Handler has toured Europe and found the German "Lilli" doll a possible appealing toy for young girls. However, the "Lilli" doll was considered to be too risque' for the young American girl and Handler set about making a doll that would embody the American ideal of femininity. Barbie as a housewife, Barbie as a fashion icon and Barbie as a teenage tennis player were just a few of Handler's visions ("Inventing"). With the assistance of a clothing designer Handler set about creating fashions for the Barbie doll and it was not until these fashions began to catch the eye of parents that the Barbie began to gain in popularity."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Dank, S., Norton, K., Olds, T., and Olive, S. "Ken and Barbie at Life Size". Sex Roles: A Journal of Research. 34.3-4 (1996): 287+.
  • Erickson, A., Markey, C., Markey, T., Ozer, P. and Tinsely, B. "Preadolescent's Perceptions of Female Body Size and Shape: Evolutionary and Social Learning Perspectives". Journal of Youth and Adolescence. 31.2 (2002):137
  • Erikson, Erik. Life History and the Historical Moment. New York: W.W. Norton, 1975.
  • Handler, Stacy. The Body Burden: Living in the Shadow of Barbie. New York: Random House
  • "Inventing Barbie". Virginia Education. 11 November 2006. < http://xroads.virginia.edu/~class/barbie/barb2.html>

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Icon Barbie and the Female Image (2008, January 18) Retrieved September 18, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/essay/icon-barbie-and-the-female-image-100656/

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"Icon Barbie and the Female Image" 18 January 2008. Web. 18 September. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/essay/icon-barbie-and-the-female-image-100656/>