This satiric video says about itself:
Music video by Aqua performing Barbie Girl. (C) 1997 Universal Music (Denmark) A/S.
The Mattel corporation did not like that parody of their Barbie doll product, and sued. However, United States courts including the Supreme Court decided that the song was part of free speech.
Mattel has since released a promotional music video of the song (with modified lyrics) on the official Barbie web site in 2009, as part of a marketing strategy brought in to revive sales.
Now, there is a new attack on Barbie dolls in art. This time not by Mattel, but by prude rich people in Rotterdam city in the Netherlands.
Translated from Dutch daily Algemeen Dagblad today:
At a primary school in Rotterdam a riot has broken out about the spare time activity of a teacher. Parents keep their children at home because they find the art made by the teacher – sexy Barbies – indecent.
By Jitske-Sophie Venema
The Rotterdam School Association has two primary schools in Rotterdam. The parental financial contribution here is more than ten times as high as average at 760 euros, more than half of the pupils get the advice to continue at the highest level of secondary education and culture is of paramount importance.
So, very probably, this prude minority of parents now attacking a teacher for making art in her spare time are much richer than average parents in Rotterdam. They may well be the same kind of person as billionaire Silvio Berlusconi in Italy. Berlusconi, who publicly censors eighteenth century art for showing a woman’s breast (not even a real mortal woman’s breast, the breast of the goddess of Truth). Meanwhile, Berlusconi had sex with a child prostitute. They may well be the same kind of person as billionaire Donald Trump in the USA. Trump, who uses religious Right theocratic ideas about ‘propriety’ for moving towards dictatorship. And who, meanwhile, privately, treats women like dirt.
Yet there is a fierce discussion on art here.
The teacher of the fifth grade is an artist outside school. On her Facebook page, scantily dressed Barbie dolls can be seen, set in challenging poses. The plastic blondes kiss each other,
‘Oh, how horrible!’ these anti-Barbie art parents think; ‘children getting to know that some girls don’t fall in love in boys, but with other girls‘. P.S. They won’t get to know that from their teacher, as she makes the Barbie doll art IN HER SPARE TIME and exhibits it IN HER SPARE TIME. She does not bring it to the classroom.
bend over in a translucent negligée or have a star on their bare buttocks. These images drive some parents of fifth grade students nuts. “It is not normal for a teacher to have this kind of images?” they scream in an anonymously sent e-mail. The parents even think that the teacher is a suspect of child porn,
Yeah, right. Good grief! A lesson in three steps: 1. A doll is not a child. 2. The Barbie dolls do not depict children, but young adult, often professional, women. 3. If the parents want to criticize purveyors of child porn, they should not attack that teacher, but their fellow right-wingers among the Roman Catholic clergy; among the Protestant religious Right in the USA; among Jehovah’s witnesses, etc.
demand that the management intervene and do not want to send their child to school until that time.
School director Per Severin sees this happening indeed. “The exact number of children staying at home differs per day, but there are more than five”, he sighs. In order to cope with the situation, he has now called in the help of the Education Inspectorate and the municipality. “This is an excellent teacher with a long service record. What my teachers do in their private lives is not my business and certainly not that of the children – unless the private activities clash with our school principles. In this respect, these artworks are okay. Facebook has never labeled them as offensive, even though they are very strict in such matters.”
… “Of course, there can be discussions about art. But even if the majority would find these works of art repulsive, that does not mean that I will take away a teacher away from her class.”