KINDLE The Handmaid's Tale
MOBI º DOC The Handmaid's Tale Ì Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read She must lie on her back once a month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant becauOffred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read She must lie on her back once a mon It's been almost five years since I wrote my review I've rewritten large parts of it for clarity The main idea remains the same Extremist Judeo Christian beliefs have won America's culture war Now women have no rights They are slaves to men and the biblical patriarchal society in which they live The Handmaid's Tale is the first person account of one of these enslaved womenMassachusetts Turns Into Saudi Arabia?More than thirty years have passed since The Handmaid's Tale was first published in 1985 but many still think of it as the go to book for feminist fiction It makes numerous best of lists the kinds with 99 other books everyone should read before dying Even so The Handmaid's Tale frustrates me a lot—and not only because it contains run on sentences and needlessly abandons uotation marks This is no train wreck like José Saramago's Blindness but it's bad enough Simply put if you can ignore whether you agree or disagree with Margaret Atwood's ideas about politics religion and women's rights the plot and setting make no senseThe religiosity of the Reagan era inspired Atwood's dystopia in which fundamentalist Christians have taken over society While that premise does give me the heebie jeebies Atwood’s taken the idea to a literal extreme to make a point This ruins the foundation of The Handmaid's Tale because most American fundies would balk at this world Atwood imagines the extreme of the extreme and in the process completely misunderstands American evangelicalism I'm a heathen bastard and no fan of religion Fundamentalism has hurt people particularly women for millennia Extremism continues to hurt people every day especially in some parts of the world especially in some states Even so it's hard to accept Atwood's dystopia when it's set in the US in the near future—and in Massachusetts one of the most progressive states in the country one of only sixteen states in the union with state constitutional protections for abortion since 1981 I believe Massachusetts is a liberal bastion when it comes to American women's reproductive rights so it's an odd setting for this brand of nightmare In recent decades Massachusetts is also one of the least religious states so it's an odd setting for a theocracy tooAtwood chose Massachusetts for its puritanical history I can embrace the connection to the Reagan administration in the same way I can embrace Orwell's fear of communism in 1984 but to imagine an unchanging puritanical Massachusetts reuires a bit too much Societies Don't Change OvernightThe Handmaid's Tale is told in first person by a woman who’s lived in our present day or less as well as in this dark fundamentalist Tomorrowland She’s gone from wearing flip flops and sundresses to a full body religious habit color coded red to match her subservient role She was married once had a child Now she’s another’s property one of the handmaids sent from one man’s house to another The hope is that she will become pregnant when a prominent man’s wife cannot Her life has been flipped and made forfeit She lives in fear and depression and abuse This is meant to make me unnerved and it doesButSimply because an author wants to comment on society doesn’t mean he or she can ignore important logical story elements The logic part should be emphasized here I think given this is supposed to be science fiction not fantasy Although Atwood does insist The Handmaid's Tale is speculative fiction because that further legitimizes her storyor something? Never mind that sci fi and fantasy are types of speculative fictionThere’s a uestion I have that never gets answered not properly at least How did this happen so uickly? How did we go from burning bras to having every part of our lives regulated? Why did it take Massachusetts decades centuries to reject puritanism but only a few years? to reject liberalism?Rights can erode but you don’t see it happen on such a large scale and so seamlessly and not overnight Nothing happens overnight especially not governmental takeovers in relatively stable secular societies which is the book's scenario Societies evolve one way or another usually rather slowly Civil moral and regime changes don't sneak up on you It wasn't the case in Germany before Hitler in China before Mao in Afghanistan before the Taliban in Syria before its civil war It's not the case in 2016 with people like Ted Cruz and Donald Trump leading in GOP primary polls The world may be disappointing and horrible sometimes but it is rarely surprisingIf Atwood had built her dystopia on a chain of events that occurred over a longer period of time or explained how everything unraveled so uickly I might have been on board with the premise That isn't how The Handmaid's Tale is written though The explanations for the sudden changes are fantastical at best dependent on evil digitized money—be careful with the mobile payments and bitcoins ladies—and misogynistic conservative conspiracies that readers are to believe could bring millions of people to a stupefied halt and change culture in the blink of an eye view spoilerApparently it’s easy to gun down all of Congress while it’s in session Who knew? hide spoiler
Margaret Atwood ↠ The Handmaid's Tale KINDLE
Th and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant because in an age of declining births Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their ovaries are viable Offred can remember the years before when she lived and made love with her husband Luke; when she There are only a small handful of books that have affected me in a REALLY personal way In a way that I always try to put into words and always ultimately fail I have read a lot of books over the years and I've liked many disliked plenty too loved and hated a smaller amount but out of the thousands I've read there's less than ten maybe even less than five now I think about it that honestly hit me so hard that I would go so far as to say they changed me The Handmaid's Tale is a book that changed my lifeI know I know big dramatic statement to make I hear you And normally I wouldn't say that even about books I give five glowing stars; but with this book it is nothing short of the truth This book was the spark that turned me into a feminist It was the spark that made me interested in gender politics and through that politics in general One of my favourite teachers in the world gave me this book and said I think you'll like this oneShe was so wrong I didn't like this book; I loved it And I hated it I lost sleep over it I lived in it I was so completely absorbed into this world into this dark but oddly uiet dystopian reality There is something about the tone of Atwood's novels that works like a knife to my heart uiet rich the drama just bubbling under the surface of the prose Atwood doesn't waste words she doesn't sugarcoat her stories with meaningless phrases everything is subtle and everything is powerfulThis dystopia is a well told feminist nightmare An horrific portrait of a future that seems far too reminiscent of aspects of our own society and its very real recent history The best kind of dystopian fiction is for me that which convinces me this world might or could happen Atwood's world building may be sparse and built up gradually as the story unfolds but she slowly paints a portrait of stifling oppression and injustice that had me hanging on her every wordFor someone like me who was so caught up in Offred's experiences this book was truly disturbing In the best possible way There are so many themes and possible interpretations that can be taken from this book plenty of which I've literally written essays on but I'll let new readers discover and interpret the book for themselves I will issue you one warning though the ending is ambiguous and puts many people off the book But for me it's one of the very few cases where an open ending has worked 100% It made the story even powerful in my opinion and guaranteed I would never be able to forget Offred and indeed this whole book “We were the people who were not in the papers We lived in the blank white spaces at the edges of print It gave us freedom We lived in the gaps between the stories” Blog | Leafmarks | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Tumblr
READER Þ The Handmaid's Tale ↠ Margaret Atwood
The Handmaid's TalePlayed with and protected her daughter; when she had a job money of her own and access to knowledge But all of that is gone now Funny unexpected horrifying and altogether convincing The Handmaid's Tale is at once scathing satire dire warning and tour de force Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale is a tale of terror as well as a warning The dystopian future she describes in Gilead which appears to be centered in Boston due to the reference to Mass Ave and the town of Salem is chillingly misogynistic where women are reduced to strict categories Martha for housework and cooking Jezebels easy to guess right? Eyes Angels soldiers for the state infertile Wives and potentially fertile Handmaids It is beautifully written with lots of flashbacks of Offredthe protagonist's name of how things devolved into the horrors of her present It is disturbing because it exposes the politics of reproduction and male sexuality taken to extremes of violence that are shocking and yet probably seemed one possible future during the Reaganite 80s when she wrote the book and now feel like the world of which Michael Pence in particular and perhaps Paul Ryan but most definitely Steve Bannon must dream Could things so change as uickly as she describes in the book? Let us hope not #resistIt is certainly the most explicitly feminist dystopian book I have ever read It was thought provoking cover to coverAll in all a very well written feminist text that should serve as a clarion call for defending women's rights to maintain control over their own bodies and lives now and foreverJust found this article about my last point hereDrumpf's sexist violent tweet against Morning Joe and the escalating attacks against reproductive freedom are moving the American experiment dangerously towards Atwood's Gilead #resistApparently there are also changes at the CIA that bring the spectre of Gilead a little closer In another note I just got Mona Eltahawy's Headscarves and Hymens which is also on subjectAny of my review readers want to tell me whether the Hulu show about this book is worth my time or not?UPDATE I have watched the first two seasons of the Hulu series and am hooked That being said I have watched 5 episodes of S03 and been disappointed For those who may not know only S01 is based on the book The other two seasons are new writing but with Margaret Atwood supervising the writer's roomI am uite interested to know if anyone has already read the seuel that was just published in September 2019?