Gender stereotypes in toys

Girls love pink and boys love blue. It is often stated as a fact, but is it? Scientists have been debating about the origin of differences between boys and girls in for example color preferences and play. The main question is whether the differences are caused by nature (i.e. girls are biologically pre-determined to like pink) or by nurture (i.e. boys are raised to like blue and dislike pink).

With seventy-five percent of girls toys pink, it is difficult to determine whether girls prefer pink by nature or girls are just ‘programmed’ that way by nurture. For an entertaining monologue about the gendered colors of toys, watch little Riley talk about how girls might like other colors besides pink.

The demand for gender-neutral toys is rising and companies are now starting to react. The Swedish company Top Toy has made a Christmas toy catalog where boys are playing with dollhouses and girls are shooting with toy guns. It is not a surprise it is a Swedish company is one of the first, since Sweden has started a big campaign to promote gender equality and reverse gender stereotypes.

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