Cover image for The fashion doll : from Bébé Jumeau to Barbie
The fashion doll : from Bébé Jumeau to Barbie
Peers, Juliette.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Berg, 2004.
Physical Description:
232 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Reading Level:
1470 Lexile.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
NK4894.3.F37 P44 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Feminists have argued that the Barbie doll perpetuates unrealistic standards of feminine beauty and undermines the credibility of women - that her long, slender plastic limbs and tiny waist fetishize the female body in unnatural ways and that her mature, overtly fashionable image promotes consumerism and superficiality over and above womens liberty and intellect. Depending on the viewer, Barbie is either a malign symbol of the strategies of the capitalist system or she is a symbol of glamour, high fashion and style, a fascinating indice of cultural change and nostalgic memory. Yet both Barbies fans and detractors assume that she stands alone.In reality she is the most high profile of a series of iconic dolls that over the past century and a half have been intimately connected to notions of fashionability. The prominence of haute couture in popular culture suggests that the link between fashion marketing and dolls should be an obvious one. Yet to date this connection has not been systematically explored. Doll collecting has been viewed as an enthusiasts or curatorial preserve, while the volumes these artefacts speak about culture and identity has not been adequately interrogated. Peers original and shrewd analysis fills a major gap in cultural studies by examining in depth the dolls associations with concepts of femininity and fashionability.

Author Notes

Juliette Peers, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia

Table of Contents

Acknowledgementsp. vi
List of Illustrationsp. viii
1 Introductionp. 1
2 Consuming Dolls/Consuming Fashion: Contemplating the Doll/Fashion Interchangep. 15
3 When Paris Was a Doll: Nineteenth-Century French Couture Dollsp. 41
4 Pretty, Magnificent, Wonderful: the French Bebe and Female Representationp. 69
5 Decline of the French Doll Industry and the Fate of the Fashionable Doll During the Twentieth Centuryp. 97
6 In the Thrall of the Dress - Dolls, Glamour and Female Image in the 1950sp. 135
7 Not Only a Pretty Face: Towards the New Millennium with the Designer Dollp. 169
Notesp. 195
Bibliographyp. 203
Indexp. 213