American Girl

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Contents

Introductions

American Girl dolls, currently produced by Mattel, have a large internet following.



American Girls

  • Kaya'aton'my - a Nez Pierce Native American girl from the Pacific Northwest during early post-Colombian America.
  • Felicity Merriman - a colonial Patriot girl living in Williamsburg, Virginia during the early Revolutionary period.
  • Elizabeth Cole - a English girl whose family is Loyalist during the early Revolutionary period. Felicity's Best Friend.
  • Josefina Montoya - a Latina girl from New Mexico under Spanish influence (1820's).
  • Kirsten Larson - a Swedish immigrant in the early immigration period of the 1850's.
  • Addy Walker - a runaway slave living free in the North during the Civil War.
  • Samantha Parkington - a well-to-do Edwardian girl from the turn of the century.
  • Nellie O'Malley - a young Irish servant girl from the turn of the century. Samantha's Best Friend.
  • Rebecca Rubin - a lively Jewish girl with a dramatic flair, growing up in New York City in 1914.
  • Kit Kittridge - a girl living frugally during America's Great Depression.
  • Molly McIntire - a girl living on the home front during World War Two.
  • Emily Bennett - an English girl staying in America during world War Two. Emily is marketed as Molly's English friend; Molly's two best friends Linda and Susan were not made into dolls.
  • Julie Albright - a girl living in the changing times of the mid 1970s.
  • Ivy Ling - a Chinese girl living in the changing times of the 1970s. Julie's best friend. They were released simultaneously, unlike previous best friend dolls, which were released after the main character.

Terminology

Below is a list of terms and their definitions that are used in this fan community.

AG - American Girl.

PC - Pleasant Company. This was the original name of the company, begun by Pleasant Rowland in 1985.

PM - Pre-Mattel. Referring to items that were produced prior to the 1998 takeover by Mattel.

WB - White-bodied. The original American Girl dolls has white canvas bodies; these were replaced by tan ones in 1991.

ONB - Our New Baby, who was introduced in 1990.

BB - Bitty Baby, who was introduced as a new version of ONB's.

American Girl Communities:

AGPT - American Girl Playthings Message Board

AG>18 - American Girl Doll Discussion for Grownups

AGFMB - American Girl Fan's Message Board

Fan works policy and history

This section needs more information.

Timeline

Below is a partial timeline of events that took place in this fan community.

[6]

Kerfluffles



While one might think that a community centered around dolls that celebrate childhood, tolerance and knowledge would be comparitively conflict-free, the American Girl Fandom has not been without its share of dust-ups.

Girl’s Life Conflict

One conflict came when several members of the community became angry with American Girl for selling awareness bracelets. Proceeds from the bracelets went to Girl’s Life, a charity that ran after-school programs that taught girls’ sexual education-–and along with that included awareness of the abortion option. Conservative members advocated boycotting of the company. Heated debate ensued, which resulted in the AGF moderators banning discussion of all religion and any other heated topics. Still, there were issues about what religious topics would and would not be allowed—for example, in times of crisis members would post with “Prayer Requests”. This led to what has, to this point, been the largest conflict in the American Girl Community:

Mass-Banning

When AGFMB, at the time the foremost American Girl fans’ message board, changed from it’s Hostboard server over to ProBoards, the moderators took the opportunity to change certain rules of the board regarding religious discussion and expression. The rule changed from banning all discussion of religion to stating that the only religions to be discussed, mentioned, or showcased were religions specifically endorsed by American Girl company literature. Several members objected to this, and when they brought up their concerns were swiftly banned. Other members were warned and then banned for mentioning certain life-style choices considered not all-age appropriate (such as having a partner of the same gender). Other members were banned without notice for belonging to another, separate American Girl community, AG>18. Because all of the bannings happened within weeks, it is known as the mass-banning.

Fake, Out! And American Girl Elitism

Etta was a little girl whose mother had a popular blog about raising children in New York, “One of those horrible moms.” In an article entitled “Fake, out!”, Etta’s mom wrote a letter addressed to the American Girl protesting poor treatment of her daughter. In short, when her daughter went to the store with a friend and took an off-brand doll (A Target “Our Generation” doll) other mothers made fun of the six-year old child and the hairstylist refused to style the doll’s hair, saying “That’s not a real doll!” Etta’s mother, who wasn’t present, was outraged when she heard about the treatment of her child, which she implied was based on the fact that Etta was poor. Readers were quick to offer support, suggesting that everyone boycott American Girl Place.

Meanwhile, American Girl community members had their own heated debates over this subject. Some supported Etta’s mom, while others pointed to certain problems with Etta’s mom’s story: 1. She was not present at the time so all of her information was third person coming from a six-year-old girl. 2. Common experience showed AGP was typically quick to remedy any problems. Further, when contacted, an AGP manager stated on the record they had never heard about the incident, nor had they been contacted by Etta’s mother. 3. While this particular article implied the family was impoverished, several other articles showed that the family was likely not as poor as the mother had made them sound. Further, the value of Etta’s “Our Generation “collection came to much more than a single American Girl doll—leading one to conclude that the family could have likely afforded an American Girl Doll but chose to purchase other items instead.

The end result was that while community members were somewhat satisfied that most of Etta’s mom’s story had been an exaggeration, by the show of support Etta’s mom had they were forced to face the fact that a large portion of families saw the company—and collectors—as elitist snobs, a reputation many collectors continue to fight to this day.

Influential Fanworks

Art

This section needs more information.

Fic

This section needs more information.

Vids

This section needs more information.

Fandom Members

Fandom Size

As of July 10, 2008, there are 122 fans on FanPop. [9]

External Links


See also

Sources

Below is a partial list of articles and academic sources to help you continue to learn about this community.




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