每日英語跟讀 Ep.K617: Barbie, A Timeless Icon with a Plastic Past
The movie released on July 21 has reignited interest in the 63-year-old plastic doll that has captivated the world, but behind her popularity lies a complex history. Let's explore some of the fascinating aspects of Barbie.
Barbie was brought to life in 1959 by Ruth Handler, co-founder of Mattel, who drew inspiration from her daughter Barbara's fascination with paper dolls. Handler saw an opportunity to empower and inspire girls by introducing a three-dimensional doll that could embody limitless possibilities.
Barbie quickly became a sensational success, with 300,000 dolls sold in the first year alone. Since then, it is estimated that over a billion dolls have found their way into the hearts of children worldwide, and even adults have not been immune to her charm. With the highly anticipated Barbie movie, written by indie icons Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig, and directed by Gerwig, the timeless allure of 63-year-old Barbie continues, especially with the charismatic Margot Robbie portraying her on screen.
芭比很快取得了驚人的成功，僅在第一年就售出30萬個洋娃娃。此後，估計有超過10億個洋娃娃進入世界各地的兒童心中，甚至成年人也無法抵擋她的魅力。隨著備受期待的芭比電影，由獨立電影指標諾亞·波拜克（Noah Baumbach）和葛莉塔·潔薇（Greta Gerwig）編寫，並由潔薇執導，這位63歲芭比的恆久魅力依然存在，尤其是由迷人的瑪格·羅比（Margot Robbie）在銀幕上飾演她。
Barbie's introduction coincided with the post-war era when plastic was considered a fantastic innovation. It revolutionized toymaking and earned Barbie and other plastic toys a place in the National Toy Hall of Fame's inaugural class in 1998. Unlike some of her peers, Barbie's composition involves multiple types of plastics, including PVC, ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS), styrenic block copolymer (SBC), and polybutylene terephthalate (PBT).
While Mattel has been secretive about its manufacturing process and materials, an article from Design Life-Cycle in 2013 highlighted several material innovations introduced in 2000. These advancements aimed to make Barbie even more appealing, with new elastomers providing a lifelike body, engineering thermoplastics enhancing her complexion, and water-based paints with potential environmental benefits for her face.
In line with growing environmental consciousness, Mattel took a step forward in 2021 by launching the Barbie Loves the Ocean collection. This range includes three dolls made from recycled ocean-bound plastic waste, reflecting the brand's commitment to sustainability.
配合日益增長的環保意識，美泰兒在2021年推出了“芭比愛海洋”（Barbie Loves the Ocean）系列。這一系列包括三個由回收的海洋塑膠垃圾製成的洋娃娃，體現了品牌對永續性概念的承諾。
As we celebrate Barbie's global impact, it's essential to acknowledge the advancements and changes she has undergone over the years. From her origins as a plastic doll from El Segundo, CA, to her transformation into an icon that inspired generations, Barbie remains a symbol of resilience and progress.
Reference article: https://www.designnews.com/materials/barbie-original-material-girl