The Handmaid 's Tale By Margret Atwood Essay

1302 Words Nov 17th, 2015 null Page
We all know the story of Pinocchio: the wooden puppet who becomes a boy. However, what parts of Pinocchio make him “human” and which parts held him back? Similarly, we find Offred in the beginning of the book as a puppet of the state and carved into their ideal version of a woman. Offred’s story in the book The Handmaid’s Tale, by Margret Atwood, is a story of survival in a harsh world where women are subjugated to the rules and standards of the government in Gilead. With no real identity to call her own, Offred is forced to navigate through her new life without expressing her emotions and connecting with people. I believe that it was the presence of human touch and interaction with other people that gave Offred the ability to keep herself intact and bring out the humanity in her by the end.

To begin, when Offred was torn from the touch of her family and friends, she was put in the Red Centre for rehabilitation to Gilead’s standards. She was forced to become a “no one” and become impartial to things that did not concern her; therefore, she was essentially a blank slate to be moulded to the government’s will. At the end of chapter six, Offred recalls the Aunts in the Centre: “ordinary, said Aunt Lydia, is what you are used to. This may not seem ordinary to you now, but after a time it will. It will become ordinary.” (Atwood, 43) Offred struggles to conform to Gilead’s social regulations of becoming “unfeeling” when she sees the dead bodies on the wall. Because of the…

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