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There's a controversy a brewing regarding America's most popular doll.
But the designer of the iconic toy think there is nothing wrong with it!
The Veep of design for Mattel, which creates Barbie dolls, Kim Culmone believes that anyone who has a problem with the doll's unrealistic proportions isn't aware of what went into the creation of the Barbie Doll.
Despite claims that the doll's slim waist and perky bosom makes generations of girls feel pressure to be thin, the vice president says the design of the doll was all about making the toy easy to dress and undress.
Here's what she said:
"Barbie’s body was never designed to be realistic. She was designed for girls to easily dress and undress. If you’re going to take a fabric that’s made for us, and turn a seam for a cuff or on the body, her body has to be able to accommodate how the clothes will fit her."
Well, ok, but what the children who some say are negatively affected by the doll's size.
Kim Culmone answered that by saying:
“To me, there isn’t an objective to change the proportion of Barbie currently. And to little girls, they are putting themselves in that doll anyway. You have to remember that girls’ perceptions are so different than grown ups’ perceptions about what real is and what real isn’t, and what the influences are… Girls view the world completely differently than grown-ups do. They don’t come at it with the same angles and baggage and all that stuff that we do. Clearly, the influences for girls on those types of issues, whether it’s body image or anything else, it’s proven, it’s peers, moms, parents, it’s their social circles. When they’re playing, they’re playing. It’s a princess-fairy-fashionista-doctor-astronaut, and that’s all one girl. She’s taking her Corvette to the moon, and her spaceship to the grocery store. That is literally how girls play.”
It's obvious that the Barbie doll looks basically like no other human being alive, but the problem for us is this isn't made clear to girls who grow up loving the plaything.
In fact studies have shown the negative affects that the Barbie doll has on girls - especially ones between the ages of 5 to 8.
So surely some sort of compromise can be made, right?
Either by changing the doll's size in a way where it won't affect the dressing and undressing of it, or by having a clear message to young people who buy the toys that this isn't what real people look like.
This doesn't seem like it would be that hard to do, but we doubt Mattel will be hard pressed to even consider change.
Why fix something that ain't broke, right? However it's becoming increasingly clear that the Barbie doll is NOT perfect, and should be altered in some shape or form.