Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

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yong321
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Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby yong321 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 3:50 am

Question: Does the association of pink to girls and blue to boys go beyond modern American culture?

According to
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pink
"The US presidential inauguration of Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1953 when Eisenhower's wife Mamie Eisenhower wore a pink dress as her inaugural gown is thought to have been a key turning point to the association of pink as a color associated with girls. Mamie's strong liking of pink led to the public association with pink being a color that "ladylike women wear." The 1957 American musical Funny Face also played a role in cementing the color's association with women."

Then I checked the French page. Unfortunately, the section "Le rose féminin" mostly references English sources. So, do the people in francophone countries have this color-gender association?
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Re: Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby LesRonces » Wed Jul 19, 2017 5:48 am

yong321 wrote:Question: Does the association of pink to girls and blue to boys go beyond modern American culture?

According to
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pink
"The US presidential inauguration of Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1953 when Eisenhower's wife Mamie Eisenhower wore a pink dress as her inaugural gown is thought to have been a key turning point to the association of pink as a color associated with girls. Mamie's strong liking of pink led to the public association with pink being a color that "ladylike women wear." The 1957 American musical Funny Face also played a role in cementing the color's association with women."

Then I checked the French page. Unfortunately, the section "Le rose féminin" mostly references English sources. So, do the people in francophone countries have this color-gender association?

If i go into the shops here (France), the stuff for baby boys is blue and the stuff for girls is pink.

There is a lot of yellow too.
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Re: Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby zenmonkey » Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:15 am

LesRonces wrote:
yong321 wrote:Question: Does the association of pink to girls and blue to boys go beyond modern American culture?

According to
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pink
"The US presidential inauguration of Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1953 when Eisenhower's wife Mamie Eisenhower wore a pink dress as her inaugural gown is thought to have been a key turning point to the association of pink as a color associated with girls. Mamie's strong liking of pink led to the public association with pink being a color that "ladylike women wear." The 1957 American musical Funny Face also played a role in cementing the color's association with women."

Then I checked the French page. Unfortunately, the section "Le rose féminin" mostly references English sources. So, do the people in francophone countries have this color-gender association?

If i go into the shops here (France), the stuff for baby boys is blue and the stuff for girls is pink.

There is a lot of yellow too.


Yep. Go to Decathlon, look for sports wear for women that doesn't have pink somewhere? It's about 20% of the selection is pink free.
Drives my daughters crazy.
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Re: Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby Tillumadoguenirurm » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:04 am

I think it's like that in most of the western world anyway, not just America.

Search pink vs blue gender roles on Google and you get quite a lot of results. This one for example https://www.google.no/amp/s/amp.livesci ... -boys.html
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Re: Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby Stefan » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:23 am

This is actually quite interesting which is why QI had a segment about it a few years ago. Sadly, their research isn't always the best (I still don't know how many moons the earth has) so they ended up spreading the myth that colors were fully reversed back in the day. A myth that was based on cherry-picked data.

So in 2012, Marco Del Giudice did a study by searching through millions of books from Google.
All the gender-color associations found in the database conform to the familiar convention of pink for girls and blue for boys. An equivalent search of the British English corpus revealed exactly the same pattern. In other words, this massive book database contains no trace of the alleged pink-blue reversal; on the contrary, the results show remarkable consistency in gender coding over time in both the U.S. and the UK, starting from the late nineteenth century and continuing throughout the twentieth century.

Then he published an updated version in 2017 when Google had extended their archive but this time he also included magazines and newspapers. The result:

Image

As you can see, the idea was still non-existent in books but inconsistent in magazines.

His conclusion the second time:
To summarize, there is evidence that, at least in the U.S., pink–blue gender coding showed a certain degree of inconsistency (though not a reversal) between the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries; however, the true extent of that inconsistency is still unclear, as different kinds of sources return dramatically different pictures. A satisfactory account of why the content of newspapers and magazines diverges from that of books will require in-depth investigation beyond the scope of this Letter.

There's a long list on Wikipedia with 47 sources from 19th century for the current gender coding and 6 for the reverse. I guess the most interesting part is countries such as Netherlands, France, Russia, Germany and Spain mentioning it long before.

We have the same "color by gender" idea in Sweden but I have no idea if it's based on American culture/marketing. It doesn't help that Swedish apparently got the current word for pink (rosa) as late as 1868. I did find some news articles from 1860+ with the old word (chair) when describing bags and gloves for ladies. "Very desirable" in Paris according to the ad. :) All I could find were anecdotes though.
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Re: Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby yong321 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 2:54 pm

Thanks everyone, especially Stefan!

I'm particularly interested in the gender-color association in French speaking countries. According to the "list on Wikipedia" (link in Stefan's second last paragrah), it looks like the current familiar convention (pink-girl, blue-boy) did exist in France as early as 1834. I'm quite sure that was not due to the influence of American culture. Stefan, you did the count, 47 for the familiar convention and 6 for the reverse? That's an 8:1 ratio. Quite significant.

Fig. 2 in Stefan's message shows that although the familiar and reversed conventions coexisted all the time up to 1930 in American newspapers and magazines, the familiar convention statistically overtook the reversed one around 1905. But in books published in either the US or UK, the reversed convention was almost non-existing.
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Re: Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby Iversen » Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:32 pm

Stefan wrote:I still don't know how many moons the earth has)


The Earth has ONE moon. The celestial object Cruithne circles the Sun, albeit in resonance with Earth so that it seen from the Earth weers around in a bean-shaped orbit in our vicinity.. It doesn't circle the Earth in a pretty slightly elliptical orbit as the one and one Moon does. This is not the only case where IQ has been slightly off the mark - I remember that Jo Brand once was rebuked for pronouncing German "Boot" correctly, but I still watch every episode because I'm a sucker for irrelevant, unnecessary and hopefully politically incorrect /salacious bits of information. And there is a forum attached where the more dubious statements are scrutinized by viewers.

BTW: reminding me about this discussion caused me to spend time on refreshing the lore surrounding the old, half-mythical Irish tribe called Cruithn (without 'e'). And one of the puzzling things about this tribe is that there apparently is a Wikipedia article about it in Belarusian (where they are called Круітні) and in Norwegian Bookmål and in Scots ... but not in Irish. Why?

As for the children I gather from the research quoted by Stefan than the pink/blue distribution was established at the end of the 19. century, but that the opposite rule before that wasn't the opposite one, but rather total chaos. That sounds slightly fishy to me, but I haven't done studies myself to find out whether there was any consistency or not before the the current distribution was established.
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Re: Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby Tillumadoguenirurm » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:42 pm

Iversen wrote:
Stefan wrote:I still don't know how many moons the earth has)


The Earth has ONE moon. The celestial object Cruithne circles the Sun, albeit in resonance with Earth so that it seen from the Earth weers around in a bean-shaped orbit in our vicinity.. It doesn't circle the Earth in a pretty slightly elliptical orbit as the one and one Moon does. This is not the only case where IQ has been slightly off the mark - I remember that Jo Brand once was rebuked for pronouncing German "Boot" correctly, but I still watch every episode because I'm a sucker for irrelevant, unnecessary and hopefully politically incorrect /salacious bits of information. And there is a forum attached where the more dubious statements are scrutinized by viewers.

BTW: reminding me about this discussion caused me to spend time on refreshing the lore surrounding the old, half-mythical Irish tribe called Cruithn (without 'e'). And one of the puzzling things about this tribe is that there apparently is an article about it in Belarusian (where they are called Круітні) and in Norwegian Bookmål and in Scots ... but not in Irish. Why?


(Psst. There is also an article about Fomorians in Amharic there (but no Irish...) ) :shock:
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Re: Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby MorkTheFiddle » Thu Jul 20, 2017 5:58 pm

So is a blue moon only for baby boys?
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Re: Pink (girl) vs. blue (boy)

Postby zenmonkey » Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:44 pm

MorkTheFiddle wrote:So is a blue moon only for baby boys?


What about earth's trojan?
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