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Racism in Retail — Where Are the Brown Dolls?

The holiday season has arrived and for many of us that means shopping time.

Over the last several years, I have worked hard to curtail shopping this season, as part of my commitment to environmentalism and anti-consumerism. So my favorite (and pretty much only) people to buy for now are the little kiddies in my life. But even this I find challenging on so many fronts!

Anyone who has bought gifts for kids before knows that there’s a unique sexism that pervades children’s toys (why do we insist that pink is for girls and blue is for boys?!), and any person of color who has ever shopped for kids’ gifts knows that race/ethnoculture comes into play too.

Unfortunately, finding a brown doll isn’t as easy as you’d think… I know this firsthand from my experiences of trying to find brown-skinned dolls, that weren’t a million dollars each, for my nieces!

In this video, I talk about my struggle to find brown dolls, about why this is problematic (Hint: it has a little something to do with white supremacy!) and, most importantly, a renegade idea that I have for what we, as consumers of color, can do to help change this.

Watch now!

Ritu Bhasin wearing a white and black top, with her chin resting in her hand

I'm Ritu.

I’m an award-winning life coach, empowerment speaker, author, and inclusion expert dedicated to helping you live your best life.

Ritu Bhasin sitting on a coach, leaning on three cushions with one hand on her folded legs and one hand in her hair. She is smiling authentically and looking off to her left.

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