Iranian prosecutor: Banish Barbie!

After tireless attempts to stop Barbie's Iranian invasion, will she be exiled for good?

By Tracy Clark-Flory
Published April 30, 2008 4:10AM (UTC)
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Poor Barbie, her feminist foes have long railed against her unhealthy impact on young girls' body image, but she now faces a much tougher critic: Iran's head prosecutor. In a letter to Vice President Parviz Davoudi, Prosecutor General Ghorban Ali Dori Najafabadi called for the top-heavy toy and other Western imports to be exiled:

The irregular importation of such toys, which unfortunately arrive through unofficial sources and smuggling, is destructive culturally and a social danger. The displays of personalities such as Barbie, Batman, Spiderman and Harry Potter ... as well as the irregular importation of unsanctioned computer games and movies are all warning bells to the officials in the cultural arena. Undoubtedly, the personality and identity of the new generation and our children, as a result of unrestricted importation of toys, has been put at risk and caused irreparable damages.

Of course, Iran has long fought Barbie's invasion. In 1992, the country unsuccessfully attempted to seize the doll from all toy stores and tried to provide a culturally acceptable alternative with Sara, a brown-haired doll that comes with a head scarf; and in 1996, Iran's children's agency deemed Barbie a "Trojan horse" designed to sneak in sexualized Western fashions. So, let's lay down some bets -- who thinks this time Iran will actually go so far as to banish Barbie?

Tracy Clark-Flory

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