Black People : Black Is Beautiful: Why Black Dolls Matter

Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by oldsoul, Feb 22, 2013.

  1. OldSoul

    OldSoul Permanent Black Man PREMIUM MEMBER

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    As a little girl, Samantha Knowles didn’t stop to consider why most of her dolls—her American Girl dolls, her Cabbage Patch Kids, her Barbie dolls—were black like her. But black dolls were not common in her upstate New York hometown, whose population remains overwhelmingly white. So when Knowles was 8 years old, one of her friends innocently asked “Why do you have black dolls?” And she didn’t know quite what to say.


    But that question stuck with her, and in college, she started to consider how she would answer as an adult. Finally, as an undergraduate film student at Dartmouth, she connected with a small but passionate group of black doll enthusiasts who gather at black doll shows around the country, and for her senior honors thesis, Knowles, now 22, completed a documentary called “Why Do You Have Black Dolls?” to articulate the answer.


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    The only black girl at her school in 1950s Dorchester, Massachusetts, Debra Britt grew up carrying the vinyl white Baby Bye-Lo doll. “I didn’t have a lot of self-esteem with it.” Britt says. “I had big issues because I was black and fat, and kids were teasing me. And I had to ride a bus with nobody on it. When I would get to school, the other kids shook my bus every day and called me names.”
    Britt’s grandmother stepped in and started dip-dying store-bought dolls brown for her granddaughter, and she also taught Britt how to make African wrap dolls from a gourd, an apple, and vines. These dolls were also made by slaves on plantations in the South, who would have their children put in a pebble to represent each fear or worry and relieve them of the burdens. “My grandmother kept saying, ‘You don’t know where you’re coming from and you need to.’” Britt says. “And so she made this African wrap doll and gave me the history.”
    [​IMG] http://www.collectorsweekly.com/articles/black-is-beautiful-why-black-dolls-matter/
     
  2. Clyde C Coger Jr

    Clyde C Coger Jr going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    In the Spirit of Sankofa,



    ... Great post and a great story thanks for sharing bro. oldsoul.

    I'm glad Samantha didn't drop it, but kept it with her and was finally able to give an exact answer. "Its a conversation, a life, a reflection of us and our people; black dolls cause us to embrace our cultural heritage, understand its pivotal role in making us who we are"... well said indeed.


    Peace In,

     
  3. $$RICH$$

    $$RICH$$ Lyon King Admin. STAFF

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    the beauty in the black dolls
    this why we need more black doll makers or market them more
    for our daughters ...............
     
  4. Clyde C Coger Jr

    Clyde C Coger Jr going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Very good point $$RICH$$, did you see the doll makers in the video? One made a snoop dog doll, lol... Had two (2) long braids and everything:rofl:... Looking just him.

    Peace In,
     
  5. $$RICH$$

    $$RICH$$ Lyon King Admin. STAFF

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    yeah !! but we need more Doll makers , I like the first lady doll she is bautiful don't know who
    made her......
     
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