Thursday, October 1, 2009

Getting all Huffy over a $95 Homeless Doll

Sorry no new posts here this week -- it's been a busy few days for me.

On Tuesday, I read about a new American Girl doll named Gwen Thompson. According to her story, she and her family are homeless and sleeping in a car. American Girl is selling her for $95 (accessories not included).

None of the profits from this doll are being donated to help actual homeless children. American Girl isn't making Gwen available for real homeless girls who likely do not have any beautiful dolls.

All Tuesday morning, I could not stop thinking about how offensive I found this situation. So I wrote a post about it on Wee Windy City. It has been viewed almost 40,000 times in the past two days. Apparently, lots of other people have strong opinions about this doll too.

Have a look at the post and let me know what you think. Would you buy this doll for your daughter? Do you find this whole situation troubling or is it much to do about nothing?


2KoP said...

Did you read Angela's CMB post about it? I find this doll appalling. I guess, if I dig deep, I can sort of understand the impetus of representing a completely unrepresented segment of society (that is being very generous and ignoring the obvious profit motive). Not only should Mattel donate all proceeds, but they should also donate many dolls to homeless shelters. I don't know about this one, though.

My take on AG is a little different than yours. They came out when my stepdaughter was about 9 or 10, when there was absolutely nothing for girls that age. It was all either too young (I can't believe Barbie is too young for 9 or 10, but it is) or wildly, inappropriately too mature. AG offered strong, resilient, self-sufficient characters who acted their age. It was a breath of fresh air.

The price point, however, has always been a huge issue.

Bobby said...

The fact that American Girl decided to market a doll that portrays a homeless girl can be taken one of two ways. Either with the understanding these dolls are meant to teach and inspire little girls by shedding some light on poverty in these challenging economic times, or that it takes away from what a doll truly is to a little girl, which is make believe.