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Parents give little toddlers dolls, miniature stoves, and cherry-candy colored lipsticks (2-4) for playthings.This would seem innocent enough, but already the At this point, the girl begins the struggle to achieve the ideal female persona , that Barbie Doll image with the perfect face, hair, and unrealistic figure.
The third stanza describes how conformists willingly help the girl to adjust to social standards that are of the highest value: “She was advised to play coy, / exhorted to come on hearty, / exercise, diet, smile and wheedle” (lines 12-14).
The verbs “advised” and “exhorted” imply that women are meant to please others, especially men.
Such a price is too high for a pure soul; in the last stanza, the girl decides to get rid of physical flaws: “Her good nature wore out / like a fan belt.
/ So she cut off her nose and her legs / and offered them up” (lines 15-18).
"Her good nature wore out like a fan belt" (15-16) symbolizes this loss of self and a change in the girl's attitude.
As a result of compromising or losing her true self to the demands of society, the young girl/woman is confronted with the realization that living this "fake" existence has left her lonely, empty, and in pain.
Piercy revolts against a society, which does not value human natural values, such as intellect, health, dexterity, and where artificiality deserves higher praise.
Another conspicuous image is “a great big nose and fat legs” that is collapsed into the comic image of “a fat nose on thick legs” (Wart 1).
The first stanza describes girl’s childhood: “This girlchild was born as usual / and presented dolls that did pee-pee/ and miniature GE stoves and irons/ and wee lipsticks the color of cherry candy” (lines 1-4).
Thus, the poet underlines the girl’s typical nature.