Book Review: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

Submitted by Emily from Chichester Library

Book Review: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

 

The Handmaid's Tale is a page-turning tale of a dystopian society ruled by a Christian fundamentalist regime. With the birth rate decreasing and women being treated as property of the state, their only option to survive is to bear children to elite couples. The author, Margaret Atwood, focuses on the life of Offred (a handmaid) in Gilead and her perspective of her new 'life'.

The book is full of brutal religious-based order, including the creation of labour camps, public hangings, and the executions of academics and social order. Atwood's novel has been compared to the world-famous book, 1984 by George Orwell. A few comparisons are they're both based on a totalitarian society with the main theme being the manipulation of power. Atwood wrote this book in 1986 during the rise of the opposition to the feminist movement. As a supporter of the movement, Atwood was inspired to write this book based on the battle of the feminist movement. Her work is a warning of what females stand to lose if the movement were to fail. This is significant as over 30 years later, Atwood's work has been created into a successful TV show, young minds have studied it in education, and it is to me, and many others, a novel people never forget.

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