I was doing some birthday party shopping at Toys R Us the other day, since the Bunster is now totally
on the pre-school party circuit (he has a better social life than I do). And I'm standing in the massively pink-saturated doll section debating the merits of Glitter Princess Sleeping Beauty
versus the Rapunzel's Wedding Flower Girl 4-pack
, when it suddenly hits me...there are no black Disney Princesses.
Sleeping Beauty, Ariel, Snow White, Pocahontas, Jasmine, Mulan...they've had blonde, brunette, redheaded, Asian, Native American, and Arab princesses. Unless I've forgotten something obvious (please let me know) only one major ethnic group is missing.
Disney does have an animated movie set in Africa, but The Lion King
has animal characters, not people.
I guess you could argue that Pacific Islanders aren't really represented, since Mulan is Chinese and Lilo isn't a Princess. And there hasn't been an Indian princess, nor a Hispanic one. But while this is true, to a four-year-old, Mulan, Jasmine or Pocahontas dolls make fine stand-ins for those ethnicities. But there's no doll that looks like you if you're an African-American four-year-old.
I'm hoping this is just because the Disney marketing machine is still generating new Princesses.
On the one hand, the whole pink-glitter-fluffy-princess thing sets my teeth on edge and I can't wait for this craze to die down. But on the other hand, I'd hate to be that little left-out girl.