Furthermore, the leadership uses various dehumanizing methods to achieve complete subservience of women to men. Some of these methods include destroying identity through classification, objectification, and indoctrination. Most women of Gilead are sufficiently repressed that they seem to accept their assigned roles, at least outwardly resigned to their fate. Atwood uses gender roles in The Handmaid’s Tale to show the lengths to which misogynistic totalitarian governments will go, to protect their dictatorships. The Republic of Gilead is a hierarchical society which requires complete submission of women to men.
Their lack of communication and inability to trust isolates them, and allows Gilead to prevail without upheaval. The dangers of language intolerance divulge Gilead’s lack of freedom of speech. Offred’s small defiance in utilizing “yes” brought risk. Atwood highlights language shapes the thinking of the society. Their speech and how they conform represents the passivity of their situation; the Handmaids passively receive and fortify the ideology.
Although religion plays a major role to the new government, only one religion is accepted, allowing a great amount of success to their new political system. In order to establish their powerful government, all American government officials were assassinated, for instance, “It was after the catastrophe, when they shot the president and machine-gunned congress and the army declared a state of emergency. They blamed it on the Islamic fanatics, at the time.” (Atwood 174). Not only does this illustrate how Gilead was able to rise to power, but portrays how certain religion groups were marginalized. In comparison to the quote, modern America has a history in oppressing people of different religion backgrounds, labeling them as terrorists and using them as scapegoats to any devastation.
Imagine a nation, in which its government commands by a religion where women are separated into different titles and must conceive children for their commander. Their rights from before this regime, and anything deemed unholy by the government, are a thing of the past. This situation is the one depicted in the Republic of Gilead, where the rules of society and its traditions are not taken lightly if broken. In the novel The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood shows that an oppressive government leads to the inevitable neglect and remiss of the law through Offred’s characterization, irony, and flashbacks. Offred's character development can show that her attitude towards the law changes over the course of her experience in the Republic of Gilead.
Satire is often described as the use of humor, irony, or exaggeration to criticize someone or something. The Handmaid’s Tale was written shortly after the beginning of Ronald Reagan’s presidency. With concerns regarding the possibility of reversing everything that feminists have accomplished, Atwood writes of a story that examines and criticizes what a protestant puritanical society would be like. In The Handmaid’s Tale, women are oppressed due to Gilead’s perverted perception of Christianity and the bible which can be seen when Aunt Lydia twists passages of the bible to conform to their agenda. Atwood shows a contemporary society with repressive views when taken to their logical extremes, in this case, extreme right wing ideology.
The most important, is the state itself. In the Old Testament, Gilead is a very fertile and therefore very desirable region in ancient Palestine. Atwood’s Gilead is the opposite of fertile but instead is an attempt to show how the government is clean and pure. (https://prezi.com/tmthv7awuphd/religion-as-social-control-in-the-handmaids-tale) Men are called ‘commanders of the faithful’ and are also referred to as the ‘eyes of the lord’(Atwood) They control every aspect of life from economics and politics to individual ideas and beliefs. (Kouhestani pg.
Most women nowadays do not seek approval from men, but living in the Red Center showed otherwise. In the novel, The Handmaid 's Tale, Offred lived two lives; one where she was free making her own choices and another where choices were made for her. Atwood revealed that men were superior and women had to play by their rules. Gilead was set out to be the worse when it came to men and women. The novel shows the way manipulation in Gilead lead to the control of women as shown throughout the actions of both genders.
In Panem their main focus was taking lives to keep your own. However, in Gilead the main idea was to make lives to keep your own. Also, in Gilead men and women had specific roles, responsibilities, and freedoms but in Panem there were no specifically clear roles separated for men and
The flower symbolizes fertility, as an object that can grow along women. The flower can symbolizes the society of Gilead, they had blame women for the fact that, “There is no such thing as a sterile man anymore…” (Atwood 61). The society of Gilead oppressed women because they stated that, “there are only women who are fruitful and women who are barren, that's the law” (Atwood 61). Indicating that there are only two types of women in society. This shows that patricary leads to oppression because the symbolism of the color of the women, it portrays their class rank and role in society.
Margaret Atwood’s 1985 novel, The Handmaid’s Tale, talks about the dystopian system, which is called Gilead Republic, that takes over the United States of America after a terroristic attack on the state. The Gilead Republic is a theocratic state made by a group of religious extremisms, who were calling themselves “the sons of Jacob”. They thought that America should become a better place, and be saved from all the sins that were happening during that time. The laws of this system are all based around Biblical philosophies. The reason they chose that name was because United states was going through an infertility crisis, and we know from the bible that Jacobs wife Rachel, was an infertile woman, so she let her husband Jacob have sex with another