Here’s another odd pink phenomenon. This is a page from a Toys ‘R Us catalog, illustrating some science toys, and note the odd distinctions being made. Both the telescope and the microscope come in special pink versions, just for the girl who is apparently more interested in getting an instrument that matches her nail polish than being functional, and note also (you may have to click through to see the larger image) that in every case the pink model is less powerful than the black and gray model.
There is a message being sent here. Being feminine, being girly, means you belong in a separate category in the science world, and it’s a category that needs less utility and more concern about appearances. I don’t get it, and I don’t understand how these kinds of distinctions persist. If my daughter wanted a telescope for a present, and I passed over the better version to get her the prettier one, I think she’d club me over the head with it and send me back to the store.
And then we’d have to send a rude letter to the manufacturer for shooing girls off into a pink ghetto.