Dr. Jennifer W. Shewmaker

Parent, Teacher, Author

Pink and Blue Toy Aisles: Part 4 – Have toy ads and packaging changed?

As we’ve been discussing Target’s announcement that they will no longer label all areas via gender, I’ve made the argument that gender based preferences are not purely biological, that the pink/blue gender divided provides distinct, and often unhealthy, messages about what it means to be a boy or girl, and that those messages can be harmful.

At this point, some of you may be wondering if this kind of gendered marketing is any different now that it has always been. So, I wanted to share a podcast with you of an interview that I conducted with Dr. Elizabeth Sweet, a sociologist who studies gendered toy advertising, how it has changed over the past century, and what it says about our culture.

Her research has shown that, in fact, over the past century there has been a drastic change in the way that toys are packaged and marketed, with a heavy focus on gender. Listen to the podcast below, Boy Builders and Pink Princesses, to hear more about what she’s found and the kinds of messages that gendered toy marketing sends to children.

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This entry was posted on August 13, 2015 by in Recognizing and tagged , , , .
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