All dolled up…well, not really

The New York Times had a story yesterday on the popular doll that has replaced Barbies across the Middle East, and her name is Fulla.
She is the doll with “Muslim values,” as described by her creator, NewBoy Design Studio. While Fulla shares the same unrealistic body proportions as Barbie, she doesn’t share her wardrobe; while she has many fashionable clothes, she’s usually modestly dressed, covered with a black abaya and head scarf. She even has her own pink prayer rug!
Fulla won’t have a boyfriend like Barbie’s Ken, but the company is planning on making a Teacher Fulla and Doctor Fulla for young girls to look up to. While there have been many other dolls in the past that have worn the hijab, none have ever been as popular as Fulla. She was introduced in November of 2003 and has been the rave since.
Some Syrian women’s rights advocates criticize Fulla being a part of the “cultural shift” towards Islamic conservatism that’s extending across the Middle East. And apparently, this particular “cultural shift” doesn’t come cheap. In Damascus, a Fulla doll costs $16, while the average per capita income is about $100 per month. Yet it still sells.
I’ve come to the conclusion that all dolls are evil, one way or another. The Chucky movies were trying to tell us something, dammit!

Join the Conversation