Censorship In The Handmaid's Tale

497 Words2 Pages
To control people’s language and means of communication is to control and hinder them as individuals. The goal of the Republic of Gilead’s government is to have people adopt a completely totalitarian view of society and social hierarchy. The fastest and most effective way something like this could be achieved would be to limit people’s use of language. In Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, people are not allowed to use certain words or phrases. Usually phrases that nurture a sense of self or rebellion are banned. The use of such phrases results in severe punishment. People are only allowed to use pre-disposed greetings, and conversation topics or responses. This bare-bones, dry use of language encourages simple conversations which provide…show more content…
It was on January 30th, 1933 in Germany where Hitler and the Nazi party rose to power. With this new political shift came censorship of all media that would threaten the party. Later that year Nazi’s would erect a bonfire consisting of 25,000 books. These books were special in the respect that they dissagreed with the Nazi’s politcal views. They were books written by Jewish authors such as Sigmund Freud and Albert Einstein. To make up for this massive destruction of literature, the Nazi’s printed new textbooks and required schools to teach them. These textbooks promoted Nazi views and essentially brainwashed students into agreeing with them. Similarly, today in North Korea a citizen can only buy a special government issued television. These televisions only broadcast special stations that promote the dictatorship government of the country. Most citizens are not even allowed to use the internet. This keeps the country relatively blind to any ideas that are not oppressed by the government. The society of Gilead demonstrates very similar situations of oppressive censorship. Commanders have the privilege of being the only people that are able to read books. The only book that they are allowed to read is the Bible though. Even the Bible itself is modified and twisted to only contain passages from the Old Testament that instill fear and encourage mass, blind following of
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