X-posted in books:
My almost 6 year old has just started getting in the American Girl Doll books, and I find myself startled by some of them. We recently started reading the first Addy book together, but stopped at my daughter's request. She didn't like the violence, the suspense and the terrifying content. I was glad because I found the book much to scarey for my tender daughter, and because I found it weirdly racist. The attempts at dialect were bizzare.
Tonight we started the first Kaya book and again I found it troubling. The children are hit with switches in the third chapter. My daughter and I talked a lot about discipline and how different cultures handle teaching children, but we were both still sad and troubled. Again,I was left with a feeling that these are written from such a white perspective--as if they are a white person's fantasy of Native American life--they need to be discussed more as artifacts of racism than as stories themselves. All a bit too much for a 6 year old.
Anyway, I'm hoping to hear the thoughts of others whose children have encoutered these books. The dolls themselves also bring up issues for me--they are wonderful, beautiful playthings on the one hand--an improvement over barbie X10--but the dolls also bring out the mose acquisitive instincts in both my daughter, me and my mom.
What do you think?
Happy mom to DS2000, DS2002, DD2004, DS2006 and DS 10/2009: