Miss Antoinette K-Doe and Her Baby Dolls
Antoinette Dorsey Fox K-Doe (1945-2009)—known to most New Orleanians as Miss Antoinette—played an important role in the history of the Baby Doll tradition. In the last years of her life, she fostered a Baby Doll revival when many feared that the practice might become relegated to memory. On Mardi Gras Day, 2004, she debuted the interracial and inter-generational Ernie K-Doe Baby Dolls, named in honor of her late husband, rhythm-and-blues singer Ernie K-Doe. This essay summarizes Miss Antoinette’s contributions to the Baby Doll tradition as a community pillar dedicated to cultural preservation and innovation. Long before she donned a Baby Doll dress, Miss Antoinette constructed many effigies, tributes, and monuments as part of her unique form of community organizing. Her Baby Doll revival can be seen in this context, as a revival that both preserved the past and (re-)invented a present.
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