Civil rights pioneer, Rosa Parks and astronaut Sally Ride have been honoured with Barbie dolls in celebration of Women’s Equality Day.
The American legends are now a part of Mattel’s Inspiring Women series, which also includes artist Frida Kahlo and NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson, Astronaut Sally Ride.
According to Mattel’s series, Rosa Parks’ doll honours the woman who’s been called the “mother of the modern civil rights movement” for starting the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott in Alabama. It shows a young Parks in classic 1950s style, wearing a floral dress, coat, pillbox hat, glasses and gloves.
On the other hand, he also celebrates the first American woman- Sally Ride- to fly in space, a feat she accomplished in 1977 aboard the space shuttle Challenger. Naturally, she wears a blue flight suit and comes with a removable helmet and headset.
“By celebrating their achievements with dolls made in their likeness, we hope girls will be inspired to pursue their dreams.”
According to Mattel, research has shown that starting at the age of five, many girls are less likely than boys to view their own gender as smart and begin to lose confidence in their own competence – this is coined the “Dream Gap.”
Showing girls more role models, historical and present, and telling their stories can help close that gap.
The new dolls which were made available for purchase from Monday, August 26 also includes historical role models Amelia Earhart, Katherine Johnson and Frida Kahlo in the collection.