Mattel about to launch first Barbie that wears a hijab


Originally published at:


She’s a lovely doll! I have noticed just how much more diverse Barbies have gotten in the past few years. Good on them for trying to better reflect real women for real girls.


It gets a little weird when you know the origin of the character, though.


Yup, Mattel is listening. Computer Engineer Barbie runs Linux.

(But sadly uses spaces and VIM and so is a horrible monster who must die!) /s


How so? Why does a doll with a hijab need context related to the inspiration? Why shouldn’t matel make dolls with hijabs just because some women wear them and it’s not be included in the category of women that Barbie is attempting to reflect more completely?


Prepare for another conservative boycott. What will these shitbirds do now that they’re giving up football, Keurig and Barbie dolls?


Make macrame art projects celebrating Roy Moore?


This is bound to upset anti-progressive assholes. Expect alt-right trolls to start petitioning for a Ken doll with “fashy” haircut.


So now airline pilot Barbie can get all racist and paranoid about hijab wearing fencer Barbie and call in secret agent squad Barbie to take her off the plane and interrogate her. All we need is Gitmo guard barbie (with optional waterboarding accessory kit) to make the scenario complete.


I didn’t say it needed context, nor did I say anyone should or shouldn’t make anything; I have no problem with anyone making, buying, selling or playing with this doll.

But I am already familiar with the context so I can’t avoid seeing the incongruity of Bild Lilli in a hijab, an incongruity that exists regardless of whether it is necessary or desirable.


Yes, it’s never to young to be learning about the rules that sky-fairies impose.




But she hasn’t been the model for Barbie, though. The Barbies I played with as a kid did not look like her, and they don’t look like her now. Was this connection a problem with President Barbie or Astronaut Barbie or the first Barbie that wasn’t white?

So, again, I’m confused about the incongruity. She’s already been highly decontextualized from the original doll that was based on a high end call girl. Why is this all of a sudden a concern when it’s a Barbie in a hijab?


God forbid we make all girls feel included.


Ken already has a fashy haircut. Also, he has fashy genitalia.




Please don’t believe that I have problems with or concerns over hijab Barbie! I don’t.

To me, it seems very weird that a doll specifically based on a sexually liberated party girl without body shame should eventually evolve into a doll that wears a garment specifically intended to hide the body in sexually repressed societies.

If you don’t think that’s odd, if you think that’s a totes normal everyday sort of progression for children’s toys, then we can discuss the difference in our opinions :slight_smile: . It seems weird to me.


You say so and I believe you.

But I’d argue that Barbie herself has long be decontextualized from the original context of a “liberated” party girl (from the little I saw about the Lili doll, I think I’d object to that characterization, but that’s a different argument about objectification of women), and has come to encompass a variety of identities that do not fit in with that context, long before this one came along.

And I think that equating a hijab only with sexually repressed societies is not quite accurate. I’d call American society very sexually repressed, despite the fact that there aren’t as many laws on the books governing how we dress in public. But we have a hard time having a real conversation about sex and sexuality in our culture, and women’s bodies are still objectified to the point that some people freak out over seeing a woman breastfeed a baby.


On a moderately unrelated note, I would think that, as a fencer, if you have long-ish hair, a hijab would be very useful for keeping it out of your face during a bout. In that vein, a hijab would be convenient as well as conforming to religious beliefs.


omg, you’re right.