Back in Time is ED’s newspaper-like column that reports an incident from the past as though it has happened just yesterday. It allows the reader to re-live it several years later, on the date it had occurred.
Today we take you 60 years back on 9th March 1959, the day Barbie was bestowed upon our childhood.
9th March, 1959: A recent toy named, ‘The Barbie’ doll has been introduced by Ruth Handler, the co-founder of Mattel, at the American Toy Fair in New York City.
This doll is introduced as a potential role model for young girls. ‘The Barbie’ doll signifies an empowered, independent young fashion model with a high aesthetic sense of beauty. These dolls are created to leave a significant impact on the minds of young girls.
The doll introduced at the fair today, was 11.5 inches tall, with body measurements of 5 inches (bust), 3 ¼ inches (waist), 5 3/16 inches (hips). Her weight is 7 ¼ ounces and she flaunted loustrous blonde hair. If ‘The Barbie’ doll were to have a human embodiment, it would have had the 36-18-38 figure.
‘The Barbie’ doll is named after Ruth Handler’s daughter Barbara. Handler is also planning to introduce the ‘Ken doll’ named after her son. Handler likes to call herself ‘the mother’ of the Barbie dolls.
In fact, it is believed that Ruth Handler got the idea of the Barbie doll when she saw her daughter playing with paper dolls. ‘The Barbie’ doll is inspired by the German-made ‘Bild Lilli’ Doll she once saw in a Swiss shop during her trial to Switzerland.
The first model of The Barbie was sold today at $3 which paves way for a bright future of these dolls in the marketing industry.
It has now been 60 years to The Barbie doll and people have had a love-hate relationship with the Barbie, while it still continues to have a hold over young girls’ heart.
After over 200 careers that ‘The Barbie’ has explored in 60 years, feminists still continues to criticise it as a poor role model. However, after years of setting unattainable beauty standards and feeding the mindsets that keep physical beauty above par, Barbie has finally dethroned the idea and introduced black and curvy babies in their collection.
‘The Barbie’ boasts of being the symbol of independence and spreading the idea to “never settle” with a single identity.
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