Atwood Present The Narrator In The Handmaid's Tale

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How does Atwood present the narrator at the start of The Handmaid’s Tale?

Atwood renders the narrator within the Handmaid’s Tale as a protagonist to manifest the contrast between those who conform to societies’ values, and those adamant to rebel. Thus Atwood delineates the narrator as a protagonist through the use of the sensory imagery, psychoanalysis, and tyrannical propaganda to illustrate this contrast.

Atwood roots sensory imagery and color to insinuate class distinction, and how it shapes the personality of the narrator. Atwood chooses the predominant color of red to indicate that the narrator is of a lower class by linking it to the themes of blood and infatuation. As opposed to using another color as the Handmaid’s uniform, Atwood specifically uses the color red due to its strong connotations to danger and human impulses. This is evident in the narrator’s remembrance of the past and ‘yearning for the future’, and implies the influence that this uniform has on the thinking of the narrator. When the narrator makes reference to the fact that ‘almost everything she wears is the color red: the color of
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The use of the noun ‘blood’ implies this notion. Common associations with this noun tend to range from pain to aggression. Moreover, the reference to these ‘wings’ around the narrators’ face shows the firmly established thread of extremist religion throughout the novel. As the narrator is almost hopeless, Atwood creates a strong bond between religion and The Handmaids’ to evoke their desperation to escape this dictatorship. The fact that the narrator solely keeps her thoughts about this oppressive society to herself, and merely conforms to the values and rules set in front of her shows her innocence, yet also illustrates the notion that she believes that the society that they live in is unjust, yet she does not seem to act on these beliefs, and rather keeps them to

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