Dora Revealed

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Here she is...

You've read about the controversy and now it's time to weigh in. According to Reuters, Dora will continue solving mysteries related to the environment, wildlife, and school while maintaining her sense of adventure.

As I wrote last week, I hope the middle school aged explorer remains curious, clever, self confident, and kind. And if she chooses to do so while wearing cute shoes, she's entitled. Isis and I agree that brains and social consciousness are not defined by appearances.

So folks, what do you think?

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I have a feeling that this is what Isis sees when she looks at a map. Only with sexier shoes, of course. From one of my new favorite blogs - Strange Maps. Thanks to Jake for the find.

It all depends on how Dora's work shakes out in the Peer Review process, really.

Maturing looks with maturing good values equals a winner. GO DORA!

What would the reaction be if Dora were made to appear totally nerdy with soda bottle thick glasses and combat boots. Someone would have gotten outraged about perpetuating a different stereotype.

Cute shoes, meh. Important thing is whether she wades through the mud puddles or lets the shoes dictate not to.

More apt for the prior note, but some other thoughts. While there's some truth to the claim that men 'go' for pretty women, once you get down to brass tacks, what it is that men think is pretty varies a lot between men (for those old enough, it's the 'Ginger vs. Mary Ann' or 'Jennifer vs. Bailey' argument writ large). Plus, there's the matter that photographic prettiness can seldom outweigh the personality. I don't know what they look like, but given Meghan McCain's responses to Laura Ingraham's attacks, no question that Ingraham is one who won't remain 'pretty' longer than her first sentence or two.

My shoes comment has a serious point to it. This ties back to the body image comments in the previous post. That is, about the same time I was encouraging my daughter to play sports (any and all), and coaching her 13 year old baseball team, research came out that girls who were physically active survived puberty better, and with better body image, than girls who weren't. So it really is important that Dora keep wading through mud, climbing trees, swimming, running, etc.. She needn't be good at the physical activties, and probably shouldn't be at all of them. But run along keeping one foot in front of the other even though others are faster.

I would love to think this is motivated by a desire to make science appealing to young women. It is more likely an attempt to expand the franchise to keep girls spending their parents money on Dora merchandise.

On a personal note, my 5 year old granddaughter announced several months ago that she is too old for Dora and is now firmly in the grip of Hannah Montana mania. If the marketers can find a way to replace Hannah with a more grown up Dora they will gladly get my appreciation and money!!!

If the marketers can find a way to replace Hannah with a more grown up Dora they will gladly get my appreciation and money!!!

Hannah's nothing... Have you heard Britney's new single? It's terrific for dancing, but I dread listening to 8-yr olds sing 'If You Seek Amy'. [say the title slowly out loud]

Children are exposed to all sorts of influences regardless of how much we try to shelter them. I hope Dora remains a positive role model and succeeds at promoting the message smart=attractive.

You know, I thought the silhouette looked a lot more sexual than the full-color image. Before, I had the impression she was wearing a mini-skirt and revealing a lot of leg, now we can see that these are leggings! I really don't see much of a problem with this.

Who cares what she looks like? It's what she DOES that matters! Don't forget Aristotle's point that the decisions characters make defines them. And that spectacle falls pretty far down the list of priorities.

By Erasmussimo (not verified) on 17 Mar 2009 #permalink

You know, I thought the silhouette looked a lot more sexual than the full-color image.

I suspect that was a good PR move to create buzz. If so, it certainly worked.

It's what she DOES that matters!

Exactly :)

Dora is obviously a stereotype promoting the patriarchal demand that women be depicted as having preternaturally large heads.

Well, she's not a mall rat (Bratz) or a preppie, but I wish she'd be more outdoor-looking.

I mean, DANG!, do you see any POCKETS in that outfit?

Smart=attractive may not work with little girls (just like smart GI Joes may not work with little boys). What's the advantage if one cannot constantly dress up one's dolls in girly clothes? Tee hee.

I hope she loses that ear-splitting shriek.

By Richard Simons (not verified) on 17 Mar 2009 #permalink

"Isis and I agree that brains and social consciousness are not defined by appearances."

But the new Dora is cute!! They should have made her over weight, mohawk hair style, with zits and yet smart as ever. That way we find out whether she is defined by appearance or not. My guess is the she is defined by appearance. Fat, odd hair style, with zits, yet smart won't fly.

Have you heard Britney's new single? It's terrific for dancing, but I dread listening to 8-yr olds sing 'If You Seek Amy'. [say the title slowly out loud]

I don't get it, Sheril. And I really, really want to.