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Mattel Inc.: Barbie Dolls Industry Essay

Mattel Inc. is the induction industry of the Barbie dolls. The first Barbie doll was invented in 1959 and since then, the Barbie dolls have been around for decades and have become some of the most popular dolls in the world. Young girls often enjoy playing make believe with their Barbie dolls through the way they dress, and make the dolls behave during play time. Most young girls see themselves through their dolls and so the young children view the Barbie dolls as their idol and future self when they grow older. There have been many arguments concerning the female representation of these dolls since it was first introduced. In recent years, the messages convey in these Barbie’s ads are now extreme. The most common arguments about the representation of female body in Barbie’s ads include self-esteem, sexism, and feminism among different people.

The Barbie doll ad “Barbie Little Black Dress” is a fine example. The Barbie dolls in this ad are catered toward the younger generation. The ad is very colorful and focuses more on fashion Style which easily attract the intended audience. The dolls in this ad are all very slender with each dressing different from one another. They are all wearing some form of back dresses but different designs. The dolls look very clean with their face covered in make up and nails painted. The dolls seem to be posing for the camera smiling. Barbie doll was originally created as a play mate for young children but have now become a cultural icon of female beauty, and independence. The Barbie dolls have impacted the lives of many young children as well as adult since its introduction in 1959 by the mantel Inc.

Throughout the history of popular culture, the Barbie dolls have been use as a symbol to different issues. In this ad, the Barbie doll is viewed as a symbol of feminism and independence of women. When one views the ad, one is able to notice that the Barbie doll comes with various different outfits and with multiple talents. The messages convey to young female consumers is that they have the freedom, independence and talents to be whatever they want. The message convey in these ads is that the female population has the power to be anything they want, they can be pilots, mechanics, doctor, housewives and more depending on what they decide. An article on Wikipedia concerning the history of the Barbie dolls explain that “Barbie’s careers are designed to show that women can take on a variety of roles in life, and the doll has been sold with a wide range of titles including Doctor Barbie (1988) and Nascar Barbie (1998) Miss Astronaut Barbie” this confirms the fact that one message one can get out of the ad is the power of female independence therefore the ad can be consider a positive aspect in these regard.

Body image is the overall perception of how one view oneself. Body image is very common among women than most men. Female beauties have been defined differently in popular culture over the years and have had different impact on different group of people. Barbie dolls have become part of almost every young girl’s live and have helped play a part in their upbringing and ideas about the female beauty. The doll in the Barbie ad possessed an unrealistic and unhealthy physical appearance that is not only impossible to attain but also very unhealthy for women. The Barbie doll used in this ad has a physical appearance that can never be attain. The doll is very petit and most young girls that buy these dolls strive to be almost like the doll. The babies overall physical appearance is viewed by most people in the society as the real nature of women beauty and what women should look like. This knowledge alone is dangerous to women and with the ad included, women are doom.

What this means is that rising numbers of good-looking, healthy women, with perfectly normal bodily measurements, find themselves forced into a category of failing to measure up to idealized standards of beauty due to ads like these. The appearance of the doll in the ad is very slender and with a physique that can easily be broken. There are no fat or even slightly overweight dolls in the entire collections. The entire doll in the ad thin and slender and base on experience and popular, most young girls will do anything to be that slender. After viewing the ad or purchasing these dolls, most normal beautiful women and young girls starts to view themselves as ugly compare to the body image of the Barbie doll because of how beauty is now define in the society the ad has a negative effect on body image.

The dolls in the ads are slender since it is an unattainable ideal of slenderness; women are condemned to be inadequate in terms of physical perfection. Increase in eating disorders and low self-esteem among women have long been associate with the influence of the Barbie dolls. The ads can be the undoing for most women especially young girls who are not yet comfortable with their body image. When presented with images of the different Barbie dolls in the ad, some women and young girls will be more likely to develop eating disorder, and a low self-esteem almost immediately when exposed to the image of these dolls. These ads are more likely to increase Body dissatisfaction and low self-esteem in young girls. Due to the low self-esteem that the girls develop, they become unhappy with their body and will try everything possible to be thin as the doll.

The ad will only provoke unsecure young girls develop unhealthy eating habits and strange behaviors to help them loose weight. Many young girls will take one at the Barbie doll and say they want I want to look like the doll. The influence the ad will have on the young girls will too strong for some and they will spend their entire life torturing themselves to look like the Barbie dolls in the ad. Throughout history, the Barbie dolls physical appearance and material possessions has been rejected by many because of the negative effect it has on women. This ad is no different. In the ad, one might conclude that the doll portrays women as sex object. The tight pants, short skirt, high heels, well made up face even though its intended market if young girls, and the manicured fingernails and toes.

The message convey in these ads is that women are sex object and materialistic. Because of these facts, most people believe this ad is hazardous for the younger generation and parents should take special care so these dolls don’t intruding into their lives. Mothers think the dolls are bad influence to their young daughters’ body image as they are growing up and are making sure such dolls never get into their homes. The dolls in this ads are overly sexual, shallow, and materialistic, and not very healthy for young girls. The dolls are supposed to be for young girls so why the short skirts, tight pants, high heel shoes, overly makeup and painted nails. Children shouldn’t be allowed to learn all that at an early age. The ad promotes all these therefore should be banned from young impressionable young females.


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