Essay On The Handmaid's Tale By Margaret Atwood

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Intro- The Handmaid’s Tale, written by Margaret Atwood is a fictitious novel that describes a misogynistic and dysfunctional society, The Republic of Gilead, which was once the United States. Gilead leadership stripped women of their freedom and their rights claiming low fertility rates as a justifiable reason for women to stay in the home and to bear children. The political agenda of Gilead leadership resembles religious conservative ideals of women as homemakers and the bearers of children as their sole and only purpose in life (Sapiro, 2003). Atwood tells the story of Offred, a handmaid, who is restricted to the home of a wealthy couple, the Commander and his wife Serena. In Gilead wealthy couples such as the Commander and Serena hire handmaids to birth their children when fertility problems ensue. In a patriarchal and gender oppressive society such Gilead, Attwood highlights the intersection of gender, politics, religion, and social stratification and the effect…show more content…
“Freedom from” refers to external factors that may exert control over an individual (Carter, 2003). The government, laws, police, and other people may restrict a person’s “freedom from” doing as they please. In the Handmaid’s Tale a woman’s negative freedom is completely taken away. Laws suppress every action of a woman’s life, male dominance inside the home restrict women into extremely submissive roles. “Freedom to” refers to the agency a person may possess over their own choices and own life (Carter, 2003). Again, women are stifled in Gilead and completely lack any positive freedom. Women in Gilead have absolutely no control or choice in their own lives. The loss of freedom is due mainly to the political control that men possess over women in Gilead. The political control of a woman’s body is at the highest priority of
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