Local Doll from Iranian Shahr-e Babak County Registered as National Intangible Cultural Heritage

Making hand-made rag dolls called “Ārooso” was a tradition passed down generation to generation from mothers to daughters. Mothers would make these dolls using materials that could be found around the house such as rags, needle and thread, cotton, or wood so that the children could play with. After they learned how to make dolls themselves, the children could enjoy this activity, encouraging them to play tirelessly in a group game called auntie-play.
The children would play the social role of a mother, child, father, or aunt for hours using these dolls, and would create stories and scenarios. The appearance of the dolls was derived from the innocent emotions and feelings of children. Therefore, some of the faces were happy and some were sad, others old or young, female or male, thin or thick. Sometimes the faces were made masterfully to resemble real people living around the children. Now, we intend to bring this forgotten doll back to life for our children, so that they can help preserve the tradition for coming generations.