In my sociology class today we spoke about the new Barbie, average Barbie. To my surprise, a lot of people in my class opposed the doll saying that Barbie, the product itself, is not responsible for the immense pressure on women to be this ideal looking woman, so why the fuss over a bland looking doll, made by a bland looking guy? My professor concluded by saying "if everything is beautiful, then nothing is beautiful, and there is no culture."
So, if the idealistic image of a woman is changed, or is broadened, or simply doesn't exist, culture doesn't exist? So is that all culture is? Ridiculously distorted physical standards that not everyone can achieve, let alone want to achieve? If so, perhaps culture needs a little adjusting. I don't think that if we begin to celebrate the different array of beautiful women in the mainstream media, that culture will be dead. I think it will open up an entirely new chapter in culture, especially in the fashion world.
And I do think Barbie, although is not to take all the blame, does play a role in why millions of women are suffering from body image diseases. Along with advertisements in magazines, television, etc.
For the people who prefer regular barbie, prefer Caucasian fashion models in advertisements, etc, that's fine, they can continue to do so. But I think it's important for people to have that option: the option to pick up a magazine that displays a different kind of beauty, that option for mothers to pick up a doll they think is more suitable for their children to play with. I think that this average barbie is a step in the right direction. I'm not saying that this should take away from the fabulous standards that many women love to live up to (because that's what they genuinely want), I'm saying that for the millions of women who do not wish to look or live like that, that that's okay too, and that it shouldn't be considered not art or an end to culture.
Here's the average Barbie video:
After-all, there is a lot of great mainstream art in pop-culture that opposes the idealistic views of how women should behave and look:
Also, how cool is Pink wearing a "die hipster scum" shirt back in 2009?