Do Toys teach Children about Gender?

Via Waylon Lewis
on Apr 12, 2011
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True story: when I was a boy, I loved pink. The color of sunset! My teacher told me I couldn’t like pink, I was a boy. So I shrugged, and picked orange. Sunrise! My mom, hearing about this, was wonderfully furious.

To this day, orange is probs my fave color.


Egads. Money-hungry plastic-makin’ toy manufacturers in charge of who likes pink and whether women play with cars or boys with guns? I’d rather have children learn from loving parents, fellow children, and honor their own predilections.

Word Clouds of the Day

Crystal Smith @ The Achilles Effect (a site that examines how young boys’ understanding of masculinity affects their perception of femininity) culled a list of words from 59 toy spots directed at either boys or girls and plugged them into Wordle to produce a word cloud illustrating which words are used most often in ads targeting boys (top) versus words used most often in ads targeting girls.

“This is not an exhaustive record,” Smith says, “it’s really just a starting point, but the results certainly are interesting.”…

…see more The Daily What


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


4 Responses to “Do Toys teach Children about Gender?”

  1. Ben_Ralston says:

    The results certainly *are* interesting…

  2. […] as man and woman. In union. Yoga. And yet, it is in this community space that the middle ground of gender is often […]

  3. […] girl sees through decades of marketing strata using only her inherent basic goodness and insight. Thanks, people of Reddit, for the tip. […]