Margaret Atwood 's The Handsmaid 's Tale

1763 WordsDec 13, 20168 Pages
Margaret Atwood’s dystopian novel, The Handsmaid’s Tale is a powerful piece of composition that surfaces the political ideals and social movements during Atwood’s period of life. Though an important primary focus of the tale is the oppressing consequence of patriarchal control of women in Gilead’s society, Atwood, through extensive detailing of Gilead’s power structure, reveal that a deeper and problematic expression of the novel is the disunion that exist amongst the female characters. Such disunity ultimately prevented the females from empowering their own kind and successfully rising against the powers that subjugated them. Atwood’s piece, though perhaps a criticism of her perceived failed feminist movements that occurred during her time is also a prognosticating urging for women in any liberating movements to form soliditary ties among one another. Foremost, the Caste System in Gilead and the ascribed roles of women coerced them to form not allegiance with other women, but to the dominant male figures in their society. Atwood would agree with sociologist Sivella Labrador that “when women themselves strongly believe that their place is at home, they become household-centered. The needs of their husbands assume a greater psychological importance than their own needs. In fact, a woman becomes defined in her domestic role” (31). Labrador’s explanation of women’s allegiance to their societal roles is reflected in the story as the women in the novel are ascribed with

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