Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Maya Angelou Barbie

The Maya Angelou Barbie from Mattel's Inspiring Women Series is presented in a see-through box with a backdrop of a living area that includes a bookshelf filled with books.

My doll arrived from Target dot com on Tuesday, January 12, 2021. I opened the shipper to photograph the doll. 

As illustrated in this headshot and the next, the doll has painted facial features that include a gap between the two front teeth.

Designed by Carlyle Nuera, captured Maya Angelou's essence as the 41-year-old author of I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings using a dedicated, sculpted-to-likeness facial sculpt.

The doll appropriately holds a miniature mock copy of the author's debut memoir.

Daintydolldivas on Instagram shared a picture of the doll without the headwrap that illustrates a short Afro.

Box Images
An image of Maya Angelou, circa 1970s, appears on the left lower corner of the front of the box along with the author, activist, and teacher's signature.

"Maya Angelou" is written on both side panels of the box.

The same circa 1970s image of Maya Angelou is at the top center of the back of the box. Her signature in white script is below the Image.

Back of box text:
Maya Angelou
Author, activist and teacher
1928 - 2014

'If you're always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be.' 
Maya Angelou

...With a multi-hyphenate career as a writer, author, activist, and teacher, Dr. Maya Angelou used her unique writing style to connect with people through books, poems, songs, and film. After joining the Harlem Writers Guild in the 1950s, Dr. Angelou took on the challenges of writing her prolific autobiography, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, published in 1970 [sic]. Nominated for a National Book Award, the memoir was a gripping account of Dr. Angelou's early life in the segregated South and how she rose above racism, childhood trauma and adversity to find her voice as a woman and writer. In 1960, Dr. Angelou headed the New York office of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, one of the principal fundraising organizations used by Dr. Martin Luther King during the Civil Rights Movement. Dr. Angelou went on to further cement her place in history, becoming the first African American and female inaugural poet to speak at a U.S. Presidential inauguration in 1993. In addition to over fifty honorary doctorates, numerous awards and accolades, Dr. Angelou also received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2010, the highest honor for a U.S. civilian. Throughout her extraordinary life, Dr. Angelou endeared herself to readers around the world, and her indomitable spirit continues to serve as an inspiration...

Mattel's description indicates the copyright year of 1970 for Maya Angelou's first book. Random House lists the copyright year as 1969.

I am quite pleased with everything about this doll, which is described additionally by Mattel as follows:
  • Label: Black Label®
  • Designer: Carlyle Nuera
  • Release Date: 1/14/2021
  • Included with doll: Headwrap, earrings, dress, bracelets, watch, ring, book, shoes, doll stand
  • Eyelashes: Painted
  • Fashion: Headwrap and dress with floral print
  • Fashion Sewn On?: No
  • Body Type: Curvy Collector
  • Doll Stand: Yes
  • Facial sculpt: New - Maya Angelou (sculpted to likeness)
  • SKU #: GYH04
At the time of this post, Maya Angelou Barbie is available at some Target stores and now as a preorder on and finally at Barbie.Mattel. It ships out in February from both sites. Target's online quantities appear to have been exhausted in some areas. So, preorder now from Amazon or Barbie.Mattel if interested in adding this "phenomenal" doll to your collection or as a gift for a child before quantities are exhausted everywhere and the price becomes cost-prohibitive on the secondary market.


There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.

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