• Home   /  
  • Archive by category "1"

Handmaids Tale Dystopia Essay

Essay on The Dystopia in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale

1098 Words5 Pages

The Dystopia in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale

Offred is a Handmaid in what used to be the United States, now the theocratic Republic of Gilead. In order to create Gilead's idea of a more perfect society, they have reverted to taking the Book of Genesis at its word. Women no longer have any privileges; they cannot work, have their own bank accounts, or own anything. The also are not allowed to read or even chose who they want to marry. Women are taught that they should be subservient to men and should only be concerned with bearing children. Margaret Atwood writes The Handmaid's Tale (1986) as to create a dystopia. A dystopia is an imaginary place where the condition of life is extremely bad, from deprivation, oppression, or…show more content…

The Commanders' characters show the reader how even men who do get privileges, such as ownership and the ability to read, are unhappy with the society.

Another example is Ofglen. Ofglen is Offred's shopping partner who is a member of Mayday, which is an underground organization dedicated to overthrowing Gilead. Although Ofglen and Offred are shopping partners, they hardly know anything about each other. Ofglen doesn't know if Offred is part of the resistance and asks her during one of their shopping trips. This is the conversation,

"'I thought you were a true believer,' [Ofglen] says.
'I thought you were,' I say.
'You were always so stinking pious.'
'So were you,' I reply.
'You can join us,' she says" (page 168).

This is the conversation where Ofglen tells about her part in the resistance. Ofglen is an important character in Awood's creation of dystopia because she is the one who adds the idea that there are multitudes of people who hate the way the republic is handling things. She is the one who says that there is an underground resistance and that by trying to make a better world, Gilead has actually made things a whole lot worse.

Offred's character is required because she gives flashbacks to the time before Gilead, giving the reader an idea of the events leading up to the beginning of the novel. How bad the world before Gilead sounds, the world of Gilead is much worse.

Show More

The Dystopia In Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale

The Dystopia in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale

Offred is a Handmaid in what used to be the United States, now the theocratic Republic of Gilead. In order to create Gilead's idea of a more perfect society, they have reverted to taking the Book of Genesis at its word. Women no longer have any privileges; they cannot work, have their own bank accounts, or own anything. The also are not allowed to read or even chose who they want to marry. Women are taught that they should be subservient to men and should only be concerned with bearing children. Margaret Atwood writes The Handmaid's Tale (1986) as to create a dystopia. A dystopia is an imaginary place where the condition of life is extremely bad, from deprivation, oppression, or terror. Three ways she displays the dystopia are through the characters, the language and the symbolism.

The first way Atwood makes her dystopian novel believable is through the characters she uses. The characters are a big part in creating her dystopian society and contribute to the overall affect of the novel. Through the characters' actions and thoughts, the true dystopian society is revealed.

One example of an influential character is the Commander. A Commander is an elite man who has a Wife and gets to have a Handmaid. The Commanders might seem to be acceptable with the whole set-up; however, there are clubs (Jezebel's for example) where these men get to go and mingle with an array of prostitutes. The Commanders go to Jezebel's to get away from the strict society. This is a quote from when the Commander takes Offred to Jezebel's, which explains a little more about the rebellion displayed by going to the club. The Commander tells Offred, "No nicotine-and-alcohol taboos here! You see, they do have some advantages here" (page 238). Clubs are things of the past according to Gilead, but these men show the reader how rebellion has come through this seemingly perfect society. The Commanders' characters show the reader how even men who do get privileges, such as ownership and the ability to read, are unhappy with the society.

Another example is Ofglen. Ofglen is Offred's shopping partner who is a member of Mayday, which is an underground organization dedicated to overthrowing Gilead. Although Ofglen and Offred are shopping partners, they hardly know anything about each other. Ofglen doesn't know if Offred is part of the resistance and asks her during one of their shopping trips. This is the conversation,

"'I thought you were a true believer,' [Ofglen] says.
'I thought you were,' I say.
'You were always so stinking pious.'
'So were you,' I reply.
'You can join us,' she says" (page 168).

This is the conversation where Ofglen tells about her part in the resistance. Ofglen is an important character in Awood's creation of dystopia because she is the one who adds the idea that there are multitudes of people who hate the way the republic is handling things. She is the one who says that there is an...

Loading: Checking Spelling

0%

Read more

Gilead's Language System in Margaret Atwood's "The Handmaid's Tale"

1057 words - 4 pages The Handmaid's Tale, a dystopian futuristic novel by Margaret Atwood recounts the story of...

Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale: Novel and Film

2081 words - 8 pages Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale: Novel and Film The Handmaid's Tale, a science-fiction novel written by Margaret Atwood, focuses on women's rights and what could happen to them in the future. This novel was later made into a movie in 1990. As with most cases of books made into movies, there are some similarities and differences between the novel and the film. Overall the film tends to stay on the same track as the book with a few minor...

The Role of Women in Modern Society in Comparison To Margaret Atwood's "The Handmaid's Tale"

1571 words - 6 pages Margaret Atwood's controversial dystopian novel, The Handmaid's Tale, leaves the reader with the lingering question of "what if?". Set in the near future, what is known to be the United States, is overtaken by puritan conservative Christians, creating the Republic of Gilead. Assasinating the President and congress, this religious extremist movement suspended the constitution and took complete control over the government. Women in Gilead lost...

Personal Discovery of the Protagonist in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale

1678 words - 7 pages In a world where women have no freedom, it is essential to discover one’s self. Margaret Atwood portrays this idea in The Handmaid’s Tale. The protagonist, Offred, is an imprisoned Handmaid in this new world of the Republic of Gilead and has to rediscover her own past for the benefit for finding herself. There are various moments in this book when Offred is reminded of her past. When this happens, it helps herdiscoverer herself a little more....

Atwood's Attention to Words in The Handmaid's Tale

1061 words - 4 pages Atwood's Attention to Words in The Handmaid's Tale The Handmaids Tale illustrates that dictatorship can be established by creating a state of fear once language controls are instituted. As a tradition to dystopian novels, Atwood has drawn much attention to the meaning of words and the significance of names, as well as the prohibition for women to read or write, in order to portray Gilead as a successful totalitarian state. Atwood is...

An Argument on whether or not The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood should be banned- Pro Dystopia

2835 words - 11 pages Pro Dystopia"I want everything back, the way it was. But there is no point to it, this wanting" (122). This is the desire of Margaret Atwood's central character Offred in The Handmaid's Tale. The novel is set in the near future in the Republic of Gilead which is formally the United States of America. Placing the blame on Islamic fanatics, a right-wing extremist movement guns down the president along with the congress, and takes total...

"The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood.

1528 words - 6 pages English LiteratureThe Handmaids TaleWill society ever reach a point where it is considered the 'natural norm' by all, and therefore unable to undergo further change? It is impossible to...

"The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood.

1764 words - 7 pages Atwood, Margaret. The Handmaid's Tale. Toronto: McClelland-Stewart, 1985, Seal Books edition 1998In "The Handmaid's Tale" one of the main themes is the influence of government. All areas of peoples' lives are controlled by the government, which is a totalitarian regime. The government in Gilead rules with the political concept...

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

623 words - 2 pages In Margaret Atwood’s, The Handmaid’s Tale, our eyes are open to an oppressive society of which seems to be the near future. Widespread sterility has led to the rich controlling young women of childbearing age, who are called “handmaidens”. The tale is narrated by Kate, also known as “Offred”, her handmaid name. She relates her struggle throughout in the most vivid of ways. The struggle around her: the oppressive Republic of Gilead, and the...

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

661 words - 3 pages In The Handmaid’s Tale, much use is made of imagery; to enable the reader to create a more detailed mental picture of the novel’s action and also to intensify the emotive language used. In particular, Atwood uses many images involving flowers and plants. The main symbolic image that the flowers provide is that of life; in the first chapter of the novel Offred says “…flowers: these are not to be dismissed. I am alive.” Many of the flowers Offred...

George Orwell's "1984" and Margaret Atwood's "The Handmaids Tale" .

2086 words - 8 pages George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty Four and Margaret Atwood's The Handmaids Tale are both novels in which the state, namely Oceania and Gilead, attempts to exert totalitarian control over the lives of...

One thought on “Handmaids Tale Dystopia Essay

Leave a comment

L'indirizzo email non verrà pubblicato. I campi obbligatori sono contrassegnati *