Vancouver : Museum of Vancouver

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Document Record
Creator Sullivan, Shirley, (Mrs.)
Title doll
Published Vancouver : Museum of Vancouver
Identifier 69042
Language English
Media Image
Contributor Museum of Vancouver
Description Barbie, who has been called "the apotheosis of consumer society", is by far the most commercially successful doll ever made. By 1989, when the doll's 30th birthday was marked by a gala celebration at Lincoln Center in New York, more than 600 million Barbies and her friends had been sold. Created by Ruth and Elliot Handler, who founded the Mattel Toy Company in the 1940s, Barbie has undergone several transformations since her inception. Her hair is always changing, as is her wardrobe. However, her stylized figure with its shapely breasts and endless legs has remained the same. Barbie is not without her detractors. In the 1970s, the National Organization of Women claimed that dolls such as Barbie encouraged girls to see themselves solely as mannequins or sex objects. Others claimed that Barbie's figure gave teenage girls unrealistic expectations about their bodies and contributed to the rise of eating disorders. On the other hand, Barbie has been hailed as a feminist pioneer, a woman who earns her own living and is not dependent on a man for her sense of identity. Barbie dolls were first produced by the California based company of Mattel in 1959. This version, called Barbie #3, was issued a year later. Made of vinyl, she has movable arms and legs, painted features, and dark saran hair. This Barbie comes with her original box which indicates that she sold for $2.98. Her strapless, flounced gown was made by the original owner's mother.
a)barbie doll; plastic body, movable arms and legs;soft plastic head with painted features;long brunette saran hair;black bead earrings stapled to earlobes; b)dress, sheer grey with contrasting metallic rows;strapless bodice;skirt in three large flounces;two pink flowers on top flounce; c)stole, matches dress b); d)petticoat, sheer white nylon in two flounces, lace trim; e)petticoat, red netting;7 flounces;alternate flounces edged with grey satin in ribbon band; f)pair of pink crocheted underpants; g-h)pair white nylon full length evening gloves; i-j)pair black plastic high heels; k)box bottom, white cardboard; l)box lid; drawings of various barbie dolls and clothing; box marked -barbie/teen age fashion model/with pedestal/stock no. 850/brunette/japan/Mattel international-; price tag marked -western 5 to $ 1 stores/2.98-
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