On the naughty step - Conduct that deserves a ticking off

6th December 2013 at 00:00

This week: Barbie

Yes, Barbie, you: the one with the waist-to-bust ratio that defies the laws of physics. It's time you had a spell on the naughty step.

We know you've been told off before for setting a bad example to girls and generally promoting a trashy look, but we won't go into that here. This time, it seems you need a spell in solitary for hogging Action Man's limelight in the halls of academe.

Experts said this week that so much academic effort had gone into studying your impact on society that they had forgotten to look at the influence of your male counterparts. Although academics have taken the time to discover that exposure to your fabulous form "heightened girls' dissatisfaction with their bodies", far fewer studies have been carried out into the effect of boys' action figures on children.

No thanks to you, Barbs, but researchers are now seeking to redress this outrage by launching a #163;500,000 study into how Action Man and the best-selling Her Majesty's Armed Forces dolls help to shape children's attitudes to war, terrorism and the armed forces - by encouraging support for the Help for Heroes campaign for war veterans, for example.

So Barbie, put on some clothes, stop flirting with the academics and let the boys' toys get a look-in.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today