Paper assignment: Writing

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Please take a look in the attachments

Please watch the original Barbie commercial. Consider what messages are inherent in these dolls and what she teaches girls about femininity.

Now watch this clip on GI Joe. What does he teach boys about masculinity?


What do toys teach us about masculinity and femininity?

Your assignment for this week is take a trip to a local toy store (or visit one on-line) and analyze the messages which are communicated through the store’s layout, branding, toy selection, packaging, etc. I find that “mega” toy stores such as Toys ‘R’ Us and Target work better for this assignment than do small specialty stores, but you are welcome to visit any toy store you like. To help you think about what you are seeing I recommend using the “Toystore Research Worksheet” I have attached above.

Once you have completed your investigation, you will write a short paper response. Your paper should be 1000 words in length and be written in narrative form. Please address the questions asked on the worksheet (but don’t just turn in a bulleted form of the worksheet-remember, you are writing a paper!). Additionally, be sure to use any critical terms covered in your assigned readings and this week’s lecture.

For full credit you must incorporate at least two sources from class (or relevant sources from outside of class). The two sources must be correctly cited (APA or MLA) in the body of your paper. You must also include a properly formatted works cited. Here is a great website that can help you with formatting your works cited and correctly citing sources: The Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL) at

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