The Shanghaiist remarks on the debut of special Tibetan Barbie dolls from toymaker Mattel in Gonggar Airport in Lhasa, the capital of the Tibet Autonomous Region:
The plastic princesses are part of a line of special edition “ethnic” dolls meant to represent the minority groups of China.
[…]After their exhibition at Gonggar Airport, the dolls will be sold off to Europeans to promote cultural awareness about Tibet. That’s great and all, but we’re sort of disappointed we won’t be able to get our hands on this showpiece of diversity over here in Shanghai. If that’s not what the Barbie megastore is for, then what is?
According to the Xinhua feature on the dolls:
Following the recent release of eight patterns of ethnic dolls called “Fuxi Girl” (meaning lucky and happy girl) throughout the country, the newly launched Tibetan Barbie girl is the most fetching and most vividly-molded, according to a staff in the airport store.
Each doll has long braided hair with coral and manual silver accessories, wears necklaces made of coral or turquoise and is adorned with an amulet “Gawu”, showing a rich ethnic feature.
According to the staff, the designers were all from Europe. Most parts of a Tibetan Barbie girl were produced in different countries. For example, the eyes were artificially blown in Germany and kinds of hairstyle were made by Japanese artisans.