From Women in Science and Engineering NETwork: FLASH!!!

S. A. Modena samodena at
Thu Oct 1 00:36:24 EST 1992

Forwarded message:
>From: mmurrain%HAMP.HAMPSHIRE.EDU at
Subject:      Feminism in/and Science and Technology e-mail list

Announcing a new mailing list:

Feminism in/and Science and Technology, the e-mail list.
===>> FIST at

Because of the recent interest generated, a new list has been created. This
list is for discussion of feminism and science and technology. This will be
an unmoderated list. If you are a scientist and a feminist this list is for
you. If you are a feminist, and interested in science and technology, check
it out. The idea of this list is to discuss critiques of science and move
beyond these critiques into the realm of how do we create a feminist
science? What do we need to pay attention to? How does one do this and get
tenure?  How do we teach science?

To get on this list, send a message to FIST-request at
Send all adminstrivia there too (getting off the list, changing addresses,

==>To send a message to the whole list, send to FIST at<==
                    Michelle Murrain
           email: mmurrain at

       %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% break &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

Subject: call to action => Mattel 

This just in:  when we write to Mattel, we should address our letters to Ms.
Jill Elikann Barad, the WOMAN who is Pres./CEO.  (Remember, don't ask her to
                     ^^^^^^^^^       ^^^^^^^^^
do any math problems.)

I've heard also that Barbie's other aphorisms pertain to hair and shopping.
She is in your local Toys R Us ... go have a listen, I guess.

   %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% break &&&&&&&&&&&&&&

Subject:      Re:  call to action => Mattel

I remember the good old days when at least Barbie got to go camping sometimes.

I went home last Christmas, and my sister and I were cleaning out boxes of our
old junk in dad's basement.  We came across our old Barbies, and all the many
accessory toys we forced our parents to purchase.  Buried at the bottom of the
box, we found three Kens ... and we burst out laughing.  To this day, neither
of us remembers how it happened or who did it ... each of the three Ken
dolls is missing something kind of important -- an arm, a leg, a head.  Maybe
Barbie did it?

Well, we were just kids, after all.  What did we know?

"Family Values" -- as a marketing strategy, it's typical bad business ... just
in time for the backlash.  Ah, the board room never fails.


     &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& break %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

>From: Carol Scheftic <cs28+%ANDREW.CMU.EDU at>
Subject:      Re: call to action => Mattel

I called Mattel's Consumer Affairs 800 number.  The man who took my call
tried to assure me that, although the doll did say, "Math class is
hard," the doll also says, "I want to be a doctor."  The inconsistency
in that makes the situation even worse!

I asked him if he knew the math requirments to get into medical school.
He did not.  To be honest, I wasn't sure either, but I called a pre-med
advisor I know who told me that many med schools require as little as
"two semesters of college mathematics" without specifying the level
(e.g., college algebra would count by that wording) BUT that a large
number also specified "two semesters of calculus-based physics with a
laboratory" which would raise the minimum math requirement considerably.

To meet that physics requirment effectively, a student should start
Algebra I no later than the 8th grade.  As participants in this list are
all too well aware, the attitudes toward mathematics that girls form by
middle school influence their ability to become doctors, scientists,
engineers, or to participate in any number of other rewarding and
interesting careers.

 scheftic at

      &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& break %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

Subject:      Re: call to action => Mattel

Dear Mattel,

How about -- "Math class is hard because the teacher never calls on me when I
raise my hand, and the boys make fun of me when I get better grades than they
do."  ... and ... "I'm GOING to be a doctor, ANYWAY, dammit."


          &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& break %%%%%%%%%%%%%
>From: Yvonne Ng <ng%WIZARD.ME.UMN.EDU at>
Subject:      Re: call to action => Mattel

Reminds me of a doll I grew up with...Barbie's sister Skipper,
but it was a "Grow-up Skipper" doll.  Yep, when you turned
her arm in a forward rotation, she grew up...or rather out.
Turn it the reverse rotation and she grew down (?) or in.
At least they didn't make it worse by having her say "math
is fun" in one mode and "math is hard" in the other...small


      &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& break %%%%%%%%%%%%%%
Sender: Women In Science and Engineering NETwork <WISENET%UICVM.BITNET at>
Subject:      Re: call to action => Mattel
X-To:         WISENET%UICVM.BITNET at pucc.Princeton.EDU
To: Multiple recipients of list WISENET <WISENET at UICVM.BITNET>

   How irritating! Barbie can only say four things, and this
is one of them . . .  What would she have said if
she had been given a few more lines?  [The mind
boggles, doesn't it?]  Apparently Mattel
thinks that teenage girls only have four things to
think about?  And they think that all teenage girls are
afraid of math?  Yet *another* way that Barbie
is unrealistic, I guess.

   Yes, Tori, inquiring minds want to know:  what
else does she say?  "Ken, would you like a beer
while you're watching the SuperBowl?"  [Sorry,
couldn't think of a way to get the word "hard"
into that sentence . . . :-) ]

   Thanks for the address, Tori -- letters definately
need to be written!!

adkins at

P.S. My personal favorite of the suggestions for phrases
that my co-workers came up with:

"Not tonight, Ken, I have a headache from thinking about
tensor fields and string theory in five-dimensional
spaces . . ."  :-)

AAAAARRRRGGGGHHHH!!!  When will society ever learn???

      &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& break %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%


More information about the Bioforum mailing list