This chapter examines the idea that girls “naturally” rush to play with dolls and tea sets, while boys head for the guns and trucks. One study, involving a rhinestone gun and spiky tea set, has proven that even when children are presented with gender-typed objects, they are more likely to think about what “boy stuff” and “girl stuff” looks like when choosing a toy to play with, rather than base their decisions on any innate qualities of the objects themselves. These choices reflect the preferences of advertisers more than any basic gender differences, a clear display of the power of marketing. The chapter cites Dora the Explorer as an example of a gender neutral product, something that appeals to both sexes and utilizes the multiple intelligences theory instead of using gender as a premise for the character.
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