Alternative Name(s): Bark Doll
Made: circa 1980 - 1983
This doll was bought in Apia, capital of Western Samoa in the early 1980s.
The Australian Children's Folklore Collection is unique in Australia, documenting contemporary children's folklore across Australia and in other countries reaching back to the 1870s. The Collection has a strong component of research material relating to Victoria.
Dolls are among the most universal toys found throughout the world and through history. They can be as simple as a stick or piece of wood or as elaborate as a mechanical walking and talking doll. Children use dolls in role-playing where they learn and practise socialisation skills and adult responsibilities; they use dolls to play parts in imaginative games; they use dolls as 'comfort toys'; and they exercise their creativity in making their own dolls from materials found around the home. Ornamental dolls can also be used to represent aspects of cultural traditions, such as dress. This Samoan doll is a common example of locally produced dolls sold as children's toys. She is dressed in a style of clothing common to Samoan women.

Physical Description

Hand made doll with a brown cloth body and long dark hair hanging in two pigtails over her shoulders. The doll's clothes are made from bark and consist of a long wrap around skirt and matching long length top with short sleeves. There is a matching broad brimmed hat. The doll has a yellow flower behind her ear. The face has been painted in black ink. Acknowledgement: Australian Children's Folklore Collection, Museum Victoria.

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