I am writing the third post about the Lammily doll, but hopefully this one is different! Lammily was created by using the average 19 year old woman’s body measurements. The video attached shows second graders being handed the Lammily doll for the first time. The kids also have the recognizable barbie doll and are asked to make comparisons. Here are some comments:
“She looks like my sister. From the side she really looks like her.”
“I don’t have other dolls like this. It looks real.”
“She’s like a real person.”
Of course these comments contribute to the discussion about body image and the potential problems of Barbie’s unattainable proportions.
The second graders are then asked to comment about the jobs that Lammily and Barbie might have. The responses for Lammily are: swimmer, teacher, a computer job, and pilot. According to the kids, Barbie’s job would be fashion store, model, make-up artist, cook. One girl laughs and says, “It doesn’t look like she’d do any job.” I find these responses interesting as they tap in to an additional discussion of whether women, perhaps more so “attractive” women, are seen as unable to do important and serious jobs.
The children are then asked to mention the differences between the two dolls. Several children say “wider”, and “a little bit fatter” when describing Lammily. One girl says “Her [Barbie} belly is so in, like..”(the child sucks in her stomach hard), before saying, “and this one [Lammily] is like nice, and, like, the perfect size.” So second graders seem to have realistic expectations about body image. She liked the way the average 19 year old looked. At some point however, girls and teenagers often become body conscious with an emphasis on being thin.
One boy says, “This one [Barbie] is so fashion-y, and then she thinks she’s better than everybody else!” A girl says that Lammily “has a smile on her face, and um, she looks like she would help somebody if they get hurt.”
The kids then all say that they’d prefer to take the Lammily doll home over Barbie. It seems that 7 and 8 year olds overwhelmingly have positive views towards Lammily and negative views towards Barbie.
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