Who Likes Bratz? The Impact of Girls’ Age and Gender Role Orientation on Preferences for Barbie Versus Bratz

Authors


Correspondence regarding this article should be sent to: Dr. Rachel Karniol, Department of Psychology, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv 69978, Israel (rkarniol@post.tau.ac.il).

ABSTRACT

Why did Bratz dolls appeal to young girls? To answer this question, sixty Israeli girls, 6–11 years old, completed Boldizar's (1989) Children's Sex Role Inventory (CSRI) and were later asked how many Barbies and Bratz dolls they have. After being shown pictures of a Barbie and a Bratz doll, they were asked as to their preference, justified their preference, and explained why girls in general like the dolls. Feminine girls indicated having a larger number of dolls of both types and all girls reported having more Barbies; yet nearly all girls reported preferring to play with Bratz. Feminine girls were least likely to offer positive descriptors of Bratz dolls. The dolls’ beauty was more often cited as reasons for younger girls’ liking both dolls, and such explanations were independent of girls’ gender role orientation. Gender role orientation did not impact any of the categories of preference justification for Barbie, but it did impact justifications for liking Bratz, with androgynous and undifferentiated girls more often citing Bratz's clothes as justifications for liking the doll. The data indicate that Bratz's appearance and clothing appealed primarily to girls with nontraditional gender role orientations.

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