PepsiCo is removing the image of Aunt Jemima from its line of pancake mix and syrup. Fair enough. Racist overtones? Of course. When we were kids we didn't think of it that way but, yeah, it's there. Uncle Ben? Pretty much the same problem. Old black dude with balding white hair looks like he's straight off the plantation. It's time the Ben thing was ditched.
Neither of those images holds a candle to what I discovered when I moved to London in the late 60s. I was no stranger to Robertson marmalade but I had no idea about the firm's UK mascot, Golly.
The Golly character, a black-faced minstrel doll with his natty red bow tie and trousers, flowing blue jacket and distinctive yellow waistcoat, danced his way across the label on pots for the best part of a century.The company distributed Golliwog trinkets as promotional giveaways and most people I met admitted they had these toys as kids. Yeah, right.