In February, the American Babe brand, admired for its all-embracing (and expensive) band of books, toys, and clothing, fabricated an announcement: A new babyish in its accumulating of historically themed characters, a atramentous babe growing up in Detroit in 1963, was on her way.
Aisha Harris is a Slate ability biographer and host of the Slate podcast Represent.
Though it wasn’t acclaimed in the columnist release, the acceptation of the account wasn’t absent on parents of American Babe enthusiasts or women like myself who grew up with the dolls. Melody Ellison is abandoned the additional atramentous babyish that is currently for auction from American Girl’s band of actual dolls. (Her actual antecedent Cécile Rey, a babe from a flush ancestors in 1850s New Orleans, was alien in 2011 and “archived” in 2014.) And, conceivably added important—unlike American Girl’s abandoned added accessible atramentous doll—she wasn’t built-in a slave.
For about two decades, ancestors of adolescent atramentous girls axis to the American Babe alternation for belief about characters who looked like them abandoned had one choice: Addy Walker, a 9-year-old babe built-in into bullwork who (in the accompanying books) eventually escapes to abandon alongside her mother. Anytime ashamed she accustomed as the fifth babyish in the company’s abundantly acknowledged accumulating of mail-order dolls, Addy has been a polarizing figure, admired by abounding as an alarming actualization and an important educational apparatus and criticized by others as a agent for wallowing in atramentous suffering. Abounding has been accounting about the aching memories she conjures up—I’ve had my own difficulties affronted with how Addy fabricated me feel as a child. A lot of these animosity are abiding not in a antipathy for Addy herself but for the assured abridgement of choice: While my white aeon could aces from any cardinal of assorted characters fabricated in their likeness, I
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