Here is a nice Washington Post article about the new girls by Dr. Rebecca Hains @rchains.
A Barbie with curves is still all about looks
Should little girls even be playing with an exaggeratedly buxom adult-bodied fashion doll in the first place?
Last week, Time reported a significant change for the Barbie brand: Beginning in March, shoppers will be able to choose from three new Barbie body shapes. In addition to the original model, the “Fashionistas” line of Barbies will offer the doll in tall, petite and curvy forms. But why?
For decades, Barbie has endured more criticism than perhaps any other toy. Her critics’ chief complaint (although not their only one): Barbie’s exaggeratedly thin body shape, which various studies have found can harm girls’ body images and cause them to restrict their eating.
Against such complaints, the company behind Barbie, Mattel, had a long history of standing its ground. As recently as February 2014, Mattel executives rebuffed critics by asserting that girls’ body image problems come from their mothers and peers — not their dolls. read more