Have you ever wanted to change something about yourself that no one else thought needed to be changed? What if everyone else but you thought you needed to change a flaw you had never seen before. That is the tragic situation in Marge Piercy’s “Barbie Doll.” The main character went from having a positive outlook on her beauty and being healthy and intelligent to having a negative self image and becoming self-conscious of everything that once was. If she had been told she was beautiful, maybe just once, she would not have taken such drastic measures to obtain beauty. In Piercy’s poem, the deadly effects of the ‘Beauty Myth’ are revealed in a symbolic representation of death.
The initial line of this poem is what starts to set the tone of the poem saying, “This girl child was born as usual” (1), meaning that she was born like any other normal child and had all the attributes and intelligence to go along with it. Piercy’s poem then continues to describe that, which is normal for a young girl to have dolls, mini GE stoves, land cherry lipstick. All of these things which are referenced in the poem on lines 2-4.
“Then in the magic of puberty, a classmate said: you have a great big nose and fat legs” (5-6) altering anything and everything this little girl ever knew to be true about herself. One comment ruined her entire view of herself and other girls, that she had to be like them since they did not like who she was born being. The “Beauty Myth” by Naomi Wolf states things like, “The more legal and material hindrances women have broken through, the more strictly and heavily and cruelly images of female beauty have come to weigh upon us... During the past decade, women breached the power structure; meanwhile, eating disorders rose exponentially and cosmetic surgery became the fastest-growing specialty...” all of this saying that the stress put on woman these days is ridiculous to look and act a certain way just to simply please society and the...