Growing up, I was a girly girl who could quite happily play dress-up and barbies for hours on end. The pinker, the better. I was also a little girl who climbed trees, scraped her knees and played rough and tumble with the neighborhood kids. I remember once when my older siblings and I got covered in mud by sliding down a long hill. It actually started out quite unintentionally. This whole mud-rolling escapade. We were walking down a steep hill to get to our grandparents’ farm. During the rainy season. In Kenya. We couldn’t help but slip. Once nice and undeniably muddy, I guess our elders acquiesced and let us to have fun with it by allowing us to run up the hill and slide down again and again. A fun memory! Funnily enough, I also remember the outfit my sister wore that day: a really cute, pink velvet sweater and shirt set with little embroidered blue and white stars all over. I desperately coveted it. That is, before it got covered in mud!
Here’s why I am not against dressing my little guy, on occasion, in ….”Eeew, pink is for girls!” Historically speaking, it wasn’t always so…
I also came across this photo spread called Bow Ties and Rude Boys: The Rise of the Global Black Dandy. It doesn’t tie in directly into the whole pink/blue gender dichotomy, but it is tangentially connected.
For something totally cool, check out some vintage Namibian hipsters. Again, not specifically targeting the pink/blue/boy/girl issue, but how about those sharply-dressed African fashion risk-takers and dandies!
And here are a few perennial winners on top of the hip-hop, fashion and entertainment scene donning several shades of rose, fuchsia and cherry blossom:
How about them apples? 🙂
If you take a look at the design and color choices in children’s clothing, not to mention the marketing of toys, over the past thirty years or so, you will find an increase in hyper- “genderization” going on. Girls’ stuff is getting ever pinker, ever more glittery, ever more hyper-feminine. Not quite sure if the same pattern has happened over on the boys’ side. I mostly came across articles focusing on the increase in female gender stereotyping. I would imagine that this paradigm shift don’t exist in a vacuum and what happens on one end of the gender spectrum would happen on the other.
Any thoughts on this, dear readers? Has there been an increase in gender stereotyping over the past few decades? Have you noticed a change in children’s clothing and toy design since your own childhood?
Either way, it’s a pretty interesting shift from the turn of the 20th century, when all babies looked pretty similar in their long, white gowns.
I suppose, for historical purposes, we could say that pink is, actually, the old blue.
Sesam gets into the spirit of things: