Support the news
If you're holiday shopping for a child this season, the gendered world of toys is quickly obvious, with walls of blue or pink. But, marketing dolls to girls and action figures to boys has provoked a debate about whether all toys should be for all children.
Rebecca Hains, professor of advertising and media studies at Salem State University. Author of "The Princess Problem: Guiding Our Girls Through The Princess-Obsessed Years." She tweets @RCHains.
- "My son spends equal time playing with boys and girls and delights in playing house and video games alike. 'Toys are for everybody,' he insists with admirable stubbornness. But not everyone sees it that way."
- "The problem with Egalia and gender-neutral toy catalogs is that boys and girls, on average, do not have identical interests, propensities, or needs. Twenty years ago, Hasbro, a major American toy manufacturing company, tested a playhouse it hoped to market to both boys and girls. It soon emerged that girls and boys did not interact with the structure in the same way. The girls dressed the dolls, kissed them, and played house. The boys catapulted the toy baby carriage from the roof. A Hasbro manager came up with a novel explanation: 'Boys and girls are different.'"
- "Gender has always played a role in the world of toys. What’s surprising is that over the last generation, the gender segregation and stereotyping of toys have grown to unprecedented levels. We’ve made great strides toward gender equity over the past 50 years, but the world of toys looks a lot more like 1952 than 2012."
This segment aired on December 9, 2015.
Support the news