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9/22/2014 1:08 pm  #1


That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

OK, I registered to ask this question and you galls seem funny, so I'll stick around too! 

As a white collector (sort of.... technically) my doll collection seems to have a lot of dolls of colour.  My american girl collection consists of my josephina, a kaya (who needs a deboxing) and a rebecca.  My Elizabeth was gifted to my niece becuase I felt they looked alike and I wanted her to have a special doll.

I realized recently, taht in my growing collection I have a lot of black dolls.  Or darker dolls.  I mostly collect vintage dolls, so there isn't alot of diversity.  Just white and black.  Not a whole lof of range.  I have white dolls btw...  My collection is mostly white.  Furga didn't make a black alta moda doll in the 60's (though that would have been amazing).  But where there are aa dolls or a range, I tend to like the dolls that aren't white first and then only be drawn to the white dolls after.

  I really really want a Tanya from the Maru and Friends line.  And a Beforever Addy because of her beautiful new hairdo!!! And I really want a Salia from the Maplea line (she's the only that doesn't creep me out! Best face of the bunch!)

So bottom line is ...  I tend to be very gut oriented when I buy.  I buy what I like.  I don't try to complete collectors or whaterver...  I am happy to have only have 3 of the Alta Moda Furga dolls and skip the girl I don't really love. 
It may be I like them because I always liked dark haired dolls when I was young and I wanted dark hair like my mother (the only time I wanted to be like my hateful witch of a mother - but she was pretty as a middle aged woman.)  My favourite barbie was a Hawaiian Barbie who had long beautiful black hair.  So much better than my shit 80's blond rats nests on the rest of them.

But I wonder if it is odd or even (dare I say it) offensive to be drawn to dolls representing girls of colour.  If some of you think collectors should branch out, what does it mean when a white collector has a lot of dolls representing girls of colour?  As my collection grows, I may be over thinking this...... 

Thanks!

 

9/22/2014 1:42 pm  #2


Re: That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

I think there are several collectors here who are white but have a lot of dolls of color in their collections. The issue with white collectors who specifically collect only white dolls (or worse, only blond/blue-eyed dolls) is that that's what societal standards teach us is the dominant model of beauty, and if someone has a medium-to-large doll collection but claims they can't find any dolls of color that they think are pretty, they are reinforcing society's teaching that only white/blond/blue-eyed dolls/people are pretty. You clearly don't have that problem!  

Just fyi, referring to people here as "gals" isn't a good idea, because there are actually a quite a lot of men and genderqueer people in this group compared to most doll boards. For the same reason, don't assume what gender any particular member is. (A few of us do have our preferred pronouns marked, but not most of us.)

I want Addy, too! Have since I was 12. In my opinion, she has the best collection (in terms of dresses and "stuff") of any of the historicals, and she has such lovely hair. I recently read her books, and I also think she also has the best-written stories. Kirsten was my childhood doll and will always have a special place in my heart, but I do very much want Addy.


My girls: Kirsten Johanna Larson (c. 1854: Ryd, Sweden/ Minnesota), Olive Leah Fonseca (c. 1887: East London, UK), Eva Marie Graff (c. 1926: Upper Michigan)
 

9/22/2014 1:59 pm  #3


Re: That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

ellaweasel wrote:

Just fyi, referring to people here as "gals" isn't a good idea, because there are actually a quite a lot of men and genderqueer people in this group compared to most doll boards. For the same reason, don't assume what gender any particular member is. (A few of us do have our preferred pronouns marked, but not most of us.).

My apologies!  I usually include guys.  Most of my groups actually do have men in them.  A slip up, nothing more.  But  I do find male doll collectors are forgiving of this quirk too!  And my apologies for not including those who pefer to not gender identify!  I have have gotten used to being on facebook over the past few years with fewer handles and more pictures of actual posters.

     Thread Starter
 

9/22/2014 5:44 pm  #4


Re: That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

 In my opinion, everyone should have a diverse collection, but you should only get a doll if YOU REALLY like the doll. Let's take a look at my collection as an example:

I have Samantha, Nellie, Molly, and Jess. My collection is 87.5% white. That is way too much white for one collection. Over the summer, I was determined to get some DOC to balance out my collection, so I began reading Addy's books. As much as I wanted to like her, I just couldn't connect to her; however, I absolutely adored Kaya's and Josefina's books. I am now planning to add them to my collection. The bottom line is - don't add any doll to your collection out of guilt. This includes being a completist: (i.e. If you love Ever After High, but you can't stand Apple White, why even bother spending the money for her to finish your collection?) There is nothing worse than an unloved doll sitting on your shelf that you bought out of guilt.


"The city seen from the Queensboro Bridge is always the city seen for the first time, in its first wild promise of all the mystery and the beauty in the world." 
 - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
 

9/22/2014 7:09 pm  #5


Re: That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

Sophia wrote:

 In my opinion, everyone should have a diverse collection, but you should only get a doll if YOU REALLY like the doll. Let's take a look at my collection as an example:

I have Samantha, Nellie, Molly, and Jess. My collection is 87.5% white. That is way too much white for one collection. Over the summer, I was determined to get some DOC to balance out my collection, so I began reading Addy's books. As much as I wanted to like her, I just couldn't connect to her; however, I absolutely adored Kaya's and Josefina's books. I am now planning to add them to my collection. The bottom line is - don't add any doll to your collection out of guilt. This includes being a completist: (i.e. If you love Ever After High, but you can't stand Apple White, why even bother spending the money for her to finish your collection?) There is nothing worse than an unloved doll sitting on your shelf that you bought out of guilt.

When this discussion came up in the community previously, people were taking issue more with people who had large collections (like, 10+ dolls or so) and claimed they couldn't find a single doll of color, from any manufacturer, that they liked. That's when it starts to get a little weird.

My collection, actually, is currently 100% white-- but I have a very small collection. I only have three dolls. Two of them are here with me, and the third is with Neth in Robot Hell, getting prettied up before she comes to live with me. (She was part of the group buy that we call The Cousins.) Do I feel guilty about this? No, because it wasn't planned. Kirsten is my childhood doll, Olive is a custom character and I got her for a great deal on e-bay, and Eva is going to be my grandmother's mini-me. Someday, when I have the funds, I'll get my Addy. And I'll get my Maplelea Alexi and make my custom Marta for Kirsten, too.
 


My girls: Kirsten Johanna Larson (c. 1854: Ryd, Sweden/ Minnesota), Olive Leah Fonseca (c. 1887: East London, UK), Eva Marie Graff (c. 1926: Upper Michigan)
 

9/22/2014 7:37 pm  #6


Re: That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

Sophia wrote:

The bottom line is - don't add any doll to your collection out of guilt. This includes being a completist: (i.e. If you love Ever After High, but you can't stand Apple White, why even bother spending the money for her to finish your collection?) There is nothing worse than an unloved doll sitting on your shelf that you bought out of guilt.

I think it also depends on the lines you collect - I have four EAH dolls, for example, and while I headcannon Cerise and Raven to be POC (Native American and Japanese, respectively), EAH as a flock look pretty white. (I haven't even seen Cedar in the wild yet to decide if I want her.) Monster High makes it a little easier to have a cast of color. 

The main thing you need to think about, if you're afraid you're collecting POC dolls for the "wrong reasons" or something, is to check your motivations. If you were collecting Asian dolls because they're so 'exotic' and something something stereotypes about "China dolls," that would be problematic. As long as you like your dolls of color because of their personalities or their sculpts or... the same reasons you like white dolls, really, then you're probably fine.

 

9/22/2014 8:10 pm  #7


Re: That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

it sounds like you buy dolls you find appealing, and not because of a sense of responsibility or because they're 'exotic' or something, sounds like your reasons are sound & you have a lovely collection.


~~~*~~~*~~~*~~~*
Dolls of Color on tumblr
https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5571/15118560417_986c681bc7.jpg
 

9/22/2014 8:15 pm  #8


Re: That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

I feel a lot of guilt for being all white and not having a diverse collection. Which is riduculous concidering the fact that there are 8 dolls in my doll cast, 2 of them are of color (Josefina and Jess), and 2 of my own that don't belong to my 2 older sisters (Felicity and Josefina). I have lived in a terribly un-diverse place (I looked it up for you and it's 75% white, 15% asain, 14% Latino, 0.4% black). Thanks to tumblr and Neth's blog I have realized how ignorant people are over here. Sorry for the tangent, but I dont think you have anything to worry about.

 

9/22/2014 9:02 pm  #9


Re: That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

I'm a white girl, and my first doll was Josefina. I have relatives in New Mexico, they wanted to get me something really cool for my 7th birthday, and they found a really cool doll who happens to live in New Mexico. Thus, I started my doll collection with a Latina girl (and in my opinion she's one of the most beautiful AG has ever released). In 2003 I got Kailey as a joint gift from several family members. I was almost content with these two, but there's one more I wanted (or rather, still want, as I don't have her yet). Kaya. My word, Kaya. I remember being so excited when the first catalog with her was released. I've always liked learning about Native American culture, I love her books, and she's gorgeous to boot.
For several years, my goal was to get Kaya and stop there, and I felt good about having three ethnicities equally represented in my collection. Then BeForever came around, and ADDY! Addy landed on my "Dolls to Get" list right behind Kaya... followed by Rebecca and JLY 61. I felt kind of odd at first when I realized that my current "dream collection" was 3 white dolls and 3 minority dolls, and I wondered if I should pass on either Rebecca or #61. It was seeing why I want these dolls that made me realize it's not racist of me to want one hispanic doll, one Native American doll, one black doll, and three white dolls.


Hey girl! Who's there? It's me, guess where! In a book? Up a tree? Take a look, find me!
Sparkle! Spirit! Style!
 
 

9/22/2014 9:50 pm  #10


Re: That other discussion on dolls and race (ie - the opposite problem)

I do feel a bit awkward and uncomfortable about not having a diverse collection (and not realizing that until I analyzed it, seeing them all lined up and going like "Oh my God - what have I done wrong?  Why do some people have more diversity in their collections of five or six than I do in my collection of 16, 22 with Bitties?), but I am trying to change that.  After Nicki gets here from the Cousins, I've told myself no more white dolls until we get some diversity here.

 

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