Women are given protection and helped from the misdeeds of others. This new environment forces women into certain mentalities. They have become so damaged that they break the rules in order to regain their sanity a bit. Handmaids are not given lotion as part of the law and resorted buttering “[the] skin to keep it soft”(Atwood 96). They are breaking rules only for vanity.
Throughout history, women have had to fight against stigma and stereotypes in society. In every era, from the ancient world to present day, females have been persecuted and taken advantage of due to their gender. In our previous set of readings, the female protagonists were strong characters who defied weak stereotypes, but were still viewed as lesser beings than men. In our second group of readings, where were written more recently, women saw a slight increase in their sovereignty. All depict women as powerful figures who use their wits to make a better life for themselves.
Similarly, in the woman warrior, “no name woman” bore the wrath of the villagers in silence without uttering the name of the man who sired her child. Kingston particularly gets mad about this silence and even attacks the silent sister at the lavatory reminding her that she was not going to be a housewife. Anzadula herself claims that she will no longer be ashamed of her existence and will use her own “serpent tongue” to overcome the traditional silence (81). The two authors show that their culture had defined role for women. Anzaldua claims that hers expected a Mastiza to turn to church as a nun, to streets as prostitute or to home as a mother.
Jalil had no choice, but to let Mariam live with him and his family. Jalil’s wives were resentful towards Mariam. Later she was introduced to Rasheed, a man triple her age, during their time of committing the abuse starts. Mariam became submissive, there was no one to save her even her own father, so she accepted her fate of being a wife and a possession. Laila is the second protagonist who is introduced halfway through the story.
Post World War Two America made an everlasting wound on the gender gap of our society and that we will spend years trying to bandage. This time period of women being submissive and men having all the dominance or power is in the process of being behind us, but not completely. The way we portrayed our gender roles in the workplace, social settings, or even family life has made a dramatic impact on how we portray them in the 21st century. Without the War’s change on society’s view of genders, America would not be where it is at
The Handmaids were the women who chose to live in the Republic of Gilead. They were primarily only wanted for their ability to get pregnant and were “victimized by a totalitarianism system that attempts to control her [their] thoughts and dent her [their] humanity” (Thomas 90). The Aunts
Perhaps because she is isolated from the rest of society, she takes her identity as a mother very seriously. Hester has to become an independant woman without her husband; Hester is put in jail, it becomes herself against the whole colony. She needs to move forward for not only herself, but for her daughter, Pearl. Hester had perceived that pearl would be viewed differently by the adults and children of the colony. Hester begins to dress Pearl in beautiful bright-colored clothes.
There are many ways in this film where we see women dependent and subordinate to male authority. To begin with, in the beginning of the film Dadi explains about the process of how women are traded off as braids. The tradition in India is that women at young ages are traded off as wives. What happens is that men and their families arrange marriages for these young girls who have no say in whether or not they want to proceed with being married. Whichever wive the man and his family chooses he gets.
She is a product of her circumstances throughout the course of The Handmaid’s Tale and remains passive in the face of oppression - in that sense, she is complicit in the perpetuation of all that Gilead represents. Offred provides an admission of guilt: "We lived, as usual, by ignoring. Ignoring isn’t the same as ignorance, you have to work at it" (66). All those who choose to “ignore” the cold hand of oppression and presume complacency are just as guilty of the result of that ignorance. But beyond base ignorance and submission to authority, Offred remains compliant even when outside of the line of direct danger – a display of her submission to the systemic oppression of Gilead.
Although gender equality has come far, it still has a ways to go. These woman and many others like them are aiding in this role reversal process. They are sparking change by eliminating the American media’s sexual portrayal of women and replacing it with a confident, driven image. Females are both viewed and portrayed as equal human beings rather than objects for pleasure now more than