In honor of Black History Month and as part of Barbie’s Inspiring Women series, Barbie is continuing to inspire girls to dream big by creating a doll in the likeness of the late writer, author, activist and teacher, Dr. Maya Angelou.
Dr. Maya Angelou used her voice and unique writing style to connect with people and inspire generations of Americans, particularly Black women. As part of Barbie’s 2020 commitment to the Black community, the brand pledged to spotlight more Black role models and, moving forward, more than 50% of global role models featured will be Black, Indigenous and Women of Color. Barbie knows that kids’ early childhood experiences shape what they imagine to be possible, so it’s important that all girls not only see themselves reflected in product and content, but also see inspiring role models who have come before them.
Dr. Maya Angelou had a multi-hyphenated career and numerous awards and accolades, including over 50 honorary doctorates and a Presidential Medal of Freedom. Nominated for a National Book Award in 1970, her autobiography I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings continues to move readers around the world today. The Maya Angelou Inspiring Women doll wears one of her signature looks —a head wrap and floor-length dress with floral print and holds a miniature replica of her prolific autobiography so girls can be inspired by her stories through play.
Mattel stated that “diversity and inclusion must be the foundation of all that we do. We will continue to stand united in the fight against racism and dedicate resources to directly impact the Black community.” They added, “Our efforts include a commitment to spotlight more Black role models who are female, and now, we are introducing a doll that honors Dr. Maya Angelou, author and activist who used her voice and unique writing style to connect with people and inspire generations.”
About the Barbie Inspiring Women Series:
In 2018, Barbie debuted the Inspiring Women™ Series, a doll line dedicated to honoring historical and present-day role models who paved the way for generations of girls to dream bigger than ever before. The series has paid tribute to a diverse lineup of women including Amelia Earhart, Katherine Johnson, Frida Kahlo, Rosa Parks, Sally Ride, Billie Jean King, Ella Fitzgerald, Florence Nightingale, and Susan B. Anthony – all of whom made history by making the world a better place for future generations of girls.
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