It’s a Barbie World!


Julie Linehan and Reagan Drake

Since 1959, Barbie has sold over a billion dolls worldwide in over 150 countries, with Mattel claiming three dolls are sold every second. Now, since 2018, Barbie Mattel has been coming out with a new line of dolls, “Inspiring Women.” This collection includes Rosa Parks, Sally Ride, Frida Kahlo, Katherine Johnson, and Amelia Earhart. For years, Barbie has been a role model for girls all around the world. With her 200 careers, she continues to inspire and motivate children to follow their dreams. 

Barbie’s Instagram posted 2 weeks ago, “The #Barbie Inspiring Women Series pays tribute to incredible heroines of their time. This year, we’re adding two courageous women – Civil Rights activist Rosa Parks and the first American woman to fly in space, Sally Ride. #MoreRoleModels.” These dolls are perfect because everyone needs to know history and this line helps represent good role models from our past. The achievements that these people have made should be remembered by future generations, and promoting dolls based off of real-life successors will help induce knowledge. Based off a recent poll, 78.3 percent high schoolers all agreed that the new line of dolls mattered because it helped introduce young girls to historical women achievers. Many high schoolers are supportive about the new line. Madison Tanner, freshman, said, “I think it’s good that they’re representing people of historical significance.” Allie Brown, a senior, said, “It’s important for kids to be able to see the people who have given them so many opportunities.” 

However, 21.7 percent said that it wasn’t important or didn’t matter. “I don’t think girls playing with dolls are really going to acknowledge who the doll is they’re playing with. To them it’s just a toy to use their imagination with,” said Sarah Roach, senior. Cory Steelman, senior, also said, “I don’t think children will care about the product, other than it being a Barbie doll.” Some people felt that it Mattel was doing too little, too late

Though there are differing opinions on the topic, 58 million Barbie dolls are sold annually. This means that millions of people are buying Barbie dolls. Even if just a handful of those sales educate and celebrate female role models, it’s better than nothing. Of course, with the $30 price point, these dolls might end up on the hands of more collectors than in the hands of girls who need these kinds of role models most.