May 10, 2011

I Had An Addy Doll

The Hairpin had a post today about American Girl Dolls where they analyzed what it meant to own each doll. It was interesting timing because I had a conversation with my family about my unique American Doll request just this past weekend. My brother and I were noting that even though my parents grew up in racist households, they didn't pass those views onto us. They were logical in that who ever we wanted to be friends with was fine with them. Case in point: I had an Addy doll.

For those who don't know, Addy Walker was the only black American Girl Doll who escaped slavery with her mother (that's they story they gave her). The author of the Hairpin post said "If you were white, and had Addy, it was because your progressive parents were trying to encourage broad world-views in a market saturated with white dolls." I have to disagree because I would hardly call my parents progressive. I requested the Addy doll.  My parents didn't go out and buy one and hand her to me to push any ideals. My mom told me that when I requested her, she asked why and I said "She has pretty hair." (lol!) I also loved her lemonade and corn muffin recipes. Need to find that book!

My sister owned Samantha, the privileged girl. The post was fairly accurate in the analysis because my sister does have expensive taste. But how could my "progressive" parents be okay with one daughter having the rich, spoiled doll and the other having the poor, slave girl? I think my parents just gave us the doll we wanted. I guess I had "an acute sense of the lack of diversity in early-'90s consumer culture" but I think I just wanted the low-maintenance doll because I'm low maintenance. 

What American Doll did you have growing up?

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  1. Omg American Girl doll's! I never had one, because I could never pick one/i had too many damn dolls anyway, but I loved all of them! Every time the catalog would come in the mail, I would read each page and fall in love with each doll. I joke that I cant move out of NY because I need to take my future daughter to the American Girl place in the city.

  2. I gasped when I saw this post! I had a Samantha and Kirsten doll, mostly because my mom loved dolls. I could really care less. I loved the books, though. I had them all! Felicity was my favorite, mostly because I loved the era in which her story was told.

    I'm pretty sure I chopped off Samantha's hair, much to my mom's chagrin. She made me go to some stupid American Girl tea party some girls from school were having. Not my cup of tea. Ha.

    awkwardly chic

  3. Omg you are too cute Kim. You would have the Addy doll. I LOVED American Girl growing up. I had the samantha doll lol Dont know if it matches up per say haha

    Also I def had a black baby doll growing up LOL And I am pretty sure it wasnt b/c of progressive parents. I am thinkin I have just always been an awesome open minded diversity loving person.

    Great post!!

  4. These dolls have a special place in my <3! She is still standing on my dresser:) Nice post

    Ashley Erica & The City

  5. @Alyssa- haha they were expensive but it's amazing all the stuff they have for them now! When I was growing up we were pretty limited.

    @Suzanne- HAHA for some reason we all chopped our dolls hair off (like Barbies) wonder why that was?

    @StyleMeBAD- haha thanks :) Well said!

    @Ashley Erica- My nephew plays with mine now haha Thanks for reading!

  6. I had a Samantha doll growing up-- I loved her ruffled sleeves and Victorian clothing! But then, I still love Victorian styling in clothes and feel that was such an important part of history.... so maybe the doll we chose just reflected early interests and values we had without knowing it? I always remember how Samantha gave her doll to Nell, one of the young girls who helped in the household...


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