I’ve got another video for you to watch, Feminist Frequency: Toy ads and learning gender.
Hoyden about Town and Blue Milk have already linked to this video, but I wanted to share it too because it’s really good and shows so clearly the way children are socialised into limiting gender roles from an early age.
This weekend’s Sydney Morning Herald has a section on Christmas gift ideas for boys and girls (children and teenagers). Annoyingly, they seem to follow a similar logic to the toy advertisements above. You only have to glance at the two pages to notice the differences in colour. The girls’ page is red/pink and the boys’ page is blue. But here are some of the gift suggestions.
Girls: bikini (pink and red), red Nintendo DSi, pink stationery and lip gloss, a red skateboard and a red scooter (at least there are some active things, I suppose), pink rollerblades, a handbag with red cherries, a necklace, sandals with pink ruffles. The only things that are not so stereotypical and worryingly coloured are a black digital camera and a copy of Roald Dahl’s The BFG.
Boys: star-gazer kit, a game of quoits, a cubby house (blue roof), model aeroplanes (mostly blue), blue and white checked sandshoes, a telescope, a planetarium (also blue).
The gifts for the teenagers are also heavily gendered.
Teen girl: lip-shaped telephone, high heeled shoes, a pink purse, make-up, a necklace (with a pink flamingo pendant), a pink watch, a pink dress, a floral bikini, and Gossip Girl on DVD.
Teen boy: Red sneakers, red skateboard. And the rest of the things are mostly black – electric guitar, an amp, a bicycle, sunglasses, earphones, a skateboarding magazine.