Wednesday, July 2, 2008
The Handmaid's Tale
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood is a dystopian novel about a woman who is stripped of her rights and her family when a powerful religious male-centered organization takes over the United States. Women are gathered up, re-educated, and assigned to positions in society. Offred's daughter is taken from her, and she is eventually assigned as a handmaid which means that she lives with a Commander and his wife. Her duties are to do the shopping and to become pregnant by the Commander in order to bear him and his wife a child. The birthrate has declined over the years, and this is he way the new government decides to take care of the problem. The novel is written from Offred's point of view as she details her daily life as a handmaid and the history of her own life that led her to this point. Learning about the society little-by-little through Offred's words is enticing and makes the book a page turner. Read this book if you enjoy dystopian novels, if you like novels written from the first-person perspective, or if you want to see what our society would be like without women's rights. I give it a 10 out of 10.