Without a doubt my eldest daughter’s (age 5) favorite colour is PINK. She thinks she’s a princess and only wants to see and hear fairy tail stories.
I always thought that this is what girls do, I know it sounds a bit stereotype as boys want to play with cars, girls play with dolls and like everything that’s pink.
Although I had my own critical thoughts, we as parents have hardly any grip on this behaviour. Turn on the Television and every child channel commercial targets boys with well, the stuff boys have to play with and for the girls that is princess stuff and everything else with the colour pink.
In toy stores this continues with seperate aisles for boys and girls with of course the toys girls and boys are supposed to play with.
Being raised by progressive parents I always disliked this in a way, why are we already stereotyping our children so young? I actually tried to sort of break through this by buying her hotweels and a bosch mini toolkit, but she only plays with these games when boys are coming over.
The whole pink obsession started at the age of 3 as I remember. And now our youngest daughter who is only 2 years old is already starting to try to put on her sisters fairy tail dresses and wings, of course she found the perfect “teacher” in her older sis.
I never really thought there would be more behind this until I read that the princess phase, at least in its current hyper-feminine and highly commercial form, is anything but natural, or so Peggy Orenstein argues in her book Cinderella Ate My Daughter.
As she tells the story, in 2000 a Disney executive named Andy Mooney went to check out a “Disney on Ice” show and found himself “surrounded by little girls in princess costumes. Princess costumes that were — horrors! — homemade.
How had such a massive branding opportunity been overlooked? The very next day he called together his team and they began working on what would become known in-house as ‘Princess.’ ” Mooney’s revelation yielded a bonanza for the company. There are now more than 26,000 Disney Princess items on the market; in 2009, Princess products generated sales of $4 billion.
Also according to Orenstein, in developmental psychology research showing that until as late as age 7, children are convinced that external signs — clothing, hairstyle, favorite color, choice of toys — determine one’s sex. “It makes sense, then, that to ensure you will stay the sex you were born you’d adhere rigidly to the rules as you see them and hope for the best,” she writes. “That’s why 4-year-olds, who are in what is called ‘the inflexible stage,’ become the self-appointed chiefs of the gender police.
This I find very interesting, I haven’t had time nor the opportunity to read the book yet but is for me with two girls age 2 and 5 on the book list of 2011.