Dystopia In The Handmaids Tale

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“Nolite te bastardes carborundorum. Don 't let the bastards grind you down(Atwood, 185).” The Handmaid’s Tale is a dystopian novel about the collapse of the United States. There was a large population drop and the new government, known as Gilead, created a caste system to best repopulate the country. Women are seen as less than men and are deprived of individual rights. Women who are fertile and are able to have children become handmaids, often times, against their will. Handmaids are property of elite men and live in the household; the handmaids serve as the womb for each couple. The main character is known as Offred, she is the handmaid for the commander, entitled Fred. Offred has unorthodox meetings with the commander in his office …show more content…
Offred remembers life before Gilead; she had a husband, Luke, and a child. She lost both of them along with her job, money, and freedom. The Handmaid’s Tale is a true dystopia because of the way women are treated, lack of freedom, and the idea that people are “better off” in the new Gilead society.
Women are known as less than men. Their names involve the names of their “owner” with the word “of” in front of it. Their name changes due to whoever shows ownership over them. Handmaids are seen only as a womb, not a person. They have no meaning to their life other than to have someone else’s child. The Commander’s wife says to Offred: “…but as far as I am concerned, this is like a business transaction (Atwood, 15).” Offred has no purpose to life aside from a business deal. She has no rights; she isn’t even permitted to work. Women aren’t allowed to read or own property: “I have nothing to write with and writing is in any case forbidden (Atwood, 39).” The coins to buy items in the market are not numbers but pictures of the item that it is intended to be purchased. Women have no chance of gaining their rights back without education. The idea is if women don’t have the opportunity to learn, they won’t have the means
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Women are no longer a subject to rape or violence, but they no longer have the ability to choose their path. The utopian society that Gilead is supposed to be is plagued by faults. While the idea is beneficial, the product is deficit. There is no illegal rape, but handmaids are still “forced” to have kids? Women have no rights; they are simply an object for the enjoyment and use of men. Offred believes that, like cattle, she can be replaced: “I knew I was dispensable. Nevertheless I said, too softly, How about your wife? (Atwood, 158).” Women are subject to being thought as worthless. They are alone. Everyone is alone. There is no form of candor communication without the chance of being annihilated. Even the men feel lonely in the society built to their needs. The Commander frequently calls for Offred to meet him in his study to play scrabble: “ ‘Thank you,’ he says. ‘For the game.’ Then he says, ‘I want you to kiss me’ (Atwood, 139).” It is ironic that the Commander feels alone in a world built for him, but it only proves to show the dystopia occurring around them. The Commander isn’t the only man to feel this way, which is why there are still the secret brothels. The brothels are a secret area of Gilead where there is alcohol and prostitutes. The area is for the elite men of Gilead. Men have continued to degrade women in the same means that Gilead is said to have

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