Lego Advocated Gender Equality in Toys … in 1974

Lego distributed letters with some building block kits in the 1970s to encourage gender equality.

Claim:   Some lego sets in the 1970s were accompanied with letters to parents encouraging gender equality in toy selection.


TRUE


Example:   [Collected via e-mail, November 2014]


LEGO released letter in the 1970s about gender and creativity. Just wanted to see if this was accurate. It sure smells like a fake.

 

Origins:   On 22 November 2014, an image originally posted on Reddit showing a letter from The Lego Group to parents started circulating on the Internet:

The image quickly went viral, but many viewers were skeptical about its authenticity. According to the Reddit user who uploaded the photo, the Lego letter was printed on the back of a pamphlet that came with a set from 1974:


To Parents

The urge to create is equally strong in all children. Boys and girls.

It’s the imagination that counts. Not skill. You build whatever comes into your head, the way you want it. A bed or a truck. A dolls house or a spaceship.

A lot of boys like dolls houses. They’re more human than spaceships. A lot of girls prefer spaceships. They’re more exciting than dolls houses.

The most important thing is to put the right material in their hands and let them create whatever appeals to them.


 

Emma Owen, part of Lego’s public relations team in the UK and Ireland, confirmed the Redditor’s story on 24 November 2014 in a statement to the Telegraph:


The text is from 1974 and was a part of a pamphlet showing a variety of Lego doll house products targeted girls aged 4 and up. The text remains relevant to this day. Our focus has always been, and remains to bring creative play experiences to all children in the world, based on the Lego brick and the Lego system, ultimately enabling children to build and create whatever they can imagine.

 

Owen said that Lego letter was attached to a pamphlet included with a variety of doll house products in the 1970s. The Lego sets were aimed at girls, but the company wanted to ensure parents knew the toys were also suitable for boys:

Last updated:   30 March 2016


Sources:




Rickman, Dina.   “That Powerful Lego Letter to Parents from the 1970s? It’s Real.”

    The Independent.   24 November 2014.


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