“Just another example of how children are placed into gender roles,” writes Belinda, who sent in this page from an Australian Kmart catalog:
Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions, with Myra Marx Ferree. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.
The girls are, of course, dressed in “pretty” costumes, such as a fairy, a ballerina, or a ladybug. Or they placed in a “domestic” role, such as the cook. The boys however get to be a pirate, a police officer, a doctor or a firefighter. Unsurprisingly, the boys are mainly dressed in costumes that are actually plausible career options, the girls however are placed in the domestic sphere or the realm of fantasy.