29 October 2014
Imagery is of great importance in the poem “Barbie Doll” by Margie Piercy. The title explains itself throughout the poem. Girls and many grown women see the doll Barbie as a perfect roll model, she is very beautiful and society expects that of women. In the poem the “girlchild” is an intelligent, healthy, and strong girl. Society expects the girl to look like the perfect, little, Barbie doll, and she is ridiculed for not looking like they want her to. A classmate tells her “You have a great big nose and fat legs,” this explains that they only judge by appearances and not by personality. The girl apologizes for not being what they want her to be and she tries to change herself into what they would like. The poem says “She was advised to play coy, exhorted to come on hearty, exercise, diet, smile, and wheedle,” this explains that she tries her hardest to change herself and fit in. Eventually she figures out that no matter how hard she tries she still can not become what they want of her. Imagery is shown by the standards of the people and that the Barbie doll is not a real person and no one can live up to her, but they have not realized that. The entire poem is written with a tone of sadness or depression. This evokes the senses of the reader by being able to sense how the girl is feeling and see how the words of others affect her. It can be pictured, this little girl who plays with the Barbie doll and it is just a toy, but to others it is the appearance that society wants and she soon realizes that when a fellow classmate hurts her with mean words. She can not go on with the fear that everyone sees her as imperfect or flawed, so in the end she gives up on trying and eventually gives up on herself. A simile in the poem, “Her good nature wore out/like a fan belt,” the message here is that she has given up on everything. In the end, she drastically changes herself by cutting off her nose and legs...
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