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The Handmaid's Tale - Essay Example

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Date The Handmaid’s Tale The book tells the story of a woman living in oppression following the fall of the United States government and the takeover by the Republic of Gilead, which employs totalitarian governance. The new government is concerned over the reduced population thus young health women are forced to be handmaids to their adopting commanders (Atwood 107)…
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The Handmaids Tale
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Download file to see previous pages Offred From her point of view, the story is narrated taking the audience through flashbacks, asides, and digressions to highlight her relationship with other characters and show the change in the society. She was disunited from her family following her capture and sentencing to the indoctrination centre. As a handmaid, Offred is forced to have relations with her master so that she can bear offspring for the infertile wife of the commander. She is depicted as an intelligent, perceptive kind woman, who bears enough faults to make her human. She is a single mother and feminist whose determination has seen her survive the worst of days in the new rule. Offred has a dark sense of humour, which helps her absorb the shock of the prevailing oppression and injustices. Moira is illustrated as a dear friend to Offred with their relationship dating back to college years. She is depicted as fiercely independent and capable of defending herself against the odds that face her as demonstrated when she demands for her rights at the Centre. Moira is regarded as the logical one and offers the voice of reasons to uplift the spirits of her friends. As such, she represents courage and hope in a bleak future, traits that seem rare under the prevailing conditions. In addition, Moira is demonstrated as athletic, tenacious, irreverent and enormously resourceful. She also provides an alternative to the meek subservience and embrace of one’s fate with a rebellious nature as she defies Gilead values. Moira rejects male-female sexual interactions to instil defiance over authority since the Gilead rule does not support gay tendencies. Her problem with authority is cemented by her rebel actions against the fear that grips the society and escapes from the Centre. Moira’s personality can be equated to that of Offred’s mother who seems to have a kind of authority over the narrator. Offred and Moira have the will to live despite the losses they have experienced with the regime change. They engage each other to uplifting their spirits and keeping the faith that all will be well despite their current predicament. This illustrates the level of care and compassion held by the two characters. They both are active feminists seeking freedom as they yearn for normalcy and the end of the social injustices. However, Moira has had successful attempts while Offred seems contend after she meets Nick, the Commander’s chauffeur. The Commander He is described as a grey-haired, semiretired military official to whom Offred is assigned to as a handmaid. He is illustrated as an intelligent man with a collection of books, which he enjoys reading as a scientist and a market researcher before the coup. The commander is among the founders of Gilead and as such is responsible for the current suffering and oppression in the society. However, he bends the rules helped forge by engaging Offred in a clandestine relationship where she visits his office. He is illustrated as a sympathetic man towards Offred and he seeks her companionship, though for selfish reasons. The commander is lonely and unhappy in his marriage; therefore, the relationship he establishes has selfish motives and does not care about the risk he puts Offred in. In this way, the commander plays the victim and prisoner, from which he seeks solace. He is morally conflicted as contemplates abdicating his role in the Gilead government, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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