American Girls and Office Women


MFA Photo student Ilona Swarzc has posted an impressive series of portraits of young American girls with their American Girl brand dolls. The dolls “were conceived to be anti-Barbie toys modeled on the body of a nine-year old.” But while the products may avoid imparting sexualized body ideals to young girls, “the branding behind the doll perpetuates domesticity and traditional gender roles.”

Sex and the Office: Evolving Depictions of Working Women, a slideshow of advertisements and illustrations, explores representations of women in the office, from the 1890s to the 1960s.

For more on representations of women in art and culture:

Mirror images : women, surrealism, and self-representation / edited by Whitney Chadwick – N8354 .M57 1998

The art of reflection : women artists’ self-portraiture in the twentieth century / Marsha Meskimmon- N71 .M45 1996


In her own image : women’s self-representation in twentieth-century art / Danielle Knafo – N8354 .K58 2009


Idols of perversity : fantasies of feminine evil in fin-de-siècle culture / Bram Dijkstra – NX652.W6 D55 1986


Facing beauty : painted women & cosmetic art / Aileen Ribeiro – NX650.F45 R53 2011

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