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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Dora moves with her audience

My Opinion

Many of the TV shows for younger girls have started a trend: short skirts and revealing tops. From tinker bell to the new troll show, the girls are shown with revealing clothing and coy smiles. Though I do think that this could be a bad thing and that parents should be careful about what they let their children watch, there is one show that has been successful at moving with the growing audience while keeping the character modest.

Dora the explorer.

Dora has evolved from a very pudgy box like girl with short bobbed hair to a longer leaner teen with long hair and more accessories.

Dora has grown with her audience but she has kept a girlish figure instead of taking on a curvaceous hourglass shape. Dora does not have that shape because her audience does not have that shape yet. Dora’s audience is the girl who is coming to realize what style and clothes are all about. She is beginning to match things and put outfits together.

Good job Dora!

Opinion 2

Growing up, I have always been surrounded by girls. With three little sisters and almost all female cousins, it would be an understatement to say that I stumble upon the color pink from time to time. In fact, I constantly find myself in a sea of the cheery hue: magenta dresses, cotton-candy blankets, and dolls with rosy red cheeks fill my sisters’ bedrooms. Most would agree that this is normal for little girls; however, as society becomes increasingly liberal, we have seen a public outcry concerning the topic of gender shaping.

A handful of parents are trying to steer away from the stereotypes that we have fallen victim to, usually by avoiding gender-specific colors (like pink and blue) and opting for more neutral colors (like yellow) when purchasing items for their children. They similarly turn to figures that they believe to be empowering, like “Dora the Explorer,” a cartoon girl who, according to the Morning Sentinel, is known for her “insatiable interest in science, cartography, adventure and problem solving.” However, in recent news, Dora has unfortunately traded in her shorts and sneakers for jewelry and a frilly dress complete with delicate ballet slippers, as seen in the image above right.

Infuriated parents are arguing that her new mature look is a downright mistake, as it goes against the very nature of Dora. Blogger Amy Jussel (Shaping Youth) claims, “it cues girls to an even worse message by conveying that girls can start out as unique, brave, active, indie spirits, but behaviorally, by the time they edge into tweenage years, they’d better march like lemmings into the beauty biz.”

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