Compare and Contrast Essay
The Handmaid’s Tale vs. The Hunger Games
A dystopian text often consists of a society that is based on a utopian ideal of a “perfect” society. Despite being a fictitious setting, the more realistic a dystopian text seems, the more disturbing it is for the audience. The novel The Handmaid’s Tale, written by Margaret Atwood, takes place in the Republic of Gilead that was formerly the state of Massachusetts. Massachusetts has been reformed to a place where puritan traditions and beliefs are the only customs allowed. Gilead and its totalitarian government oppress women to the extent where rape is a norm in their society. The novel The Hunger Games, written by Suzanne Collins, is about a contest held in the country of Panem, where twelve teenagers are forced to fight one another until only one survives the battle. The people of Panem are mandated in watching this contest, as a reminder of the previous uprising that was stopped by their totalitarian government called the Capitol. Atwood depicts Gilead in a way where it is almost possible for the society in Gilead to …show more content…
In a dystopian society, this totalitarian state is a dictatorship, mandating everyone under its ruling to obey them, and making selfish decisions that disregard the freedom and/or happiness of any of their citizens. In The Handmaid’s Tale, the government allows little to no room for anyone to rebel. The rebellion seen in this novel is so minimal that in present-day it would not be considered a major act of rebellion. The government in The Handmaid’s Tale is so controlling that they have given the Handmaids assigned phrases and/or responses for conversing. For example, when Offred meets Ofglen for the first time, their conversation is very passive, and they use all the right
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Imagine a chaotic society of people who are so entangled by ignorance and inequity that they do not realize it; this would be called a dystopian society. Dystopian societies are very popular among many fictional stories. In fact, in the stories Fahrenheit 451 and “The Veldt” by Ray Bradbury and The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, dystopian societies are represented. In many of these stories, the people in the fictional societies are violence-loving, irrational people who always seem to do what people of the U.S. society would consider "immoral." These stories are not a representation of how the U.S. society is now, but how it could be in the future. Unlike the society of Fahrenheit 451, the U.S. allows people
The Hunger Games and Fahrenheit 451 are both great examples of dystopian fiction. A dystopia is a fictional world that takes place in the future that is supposed to be perceived as a perfect society, but it’s actually the opposite. Other things that a dystopian society might display are citizens both living in a dehumanized state and feeling like they’re constantly watched by a higher power. Dystopias are places where society is backwards or unfair, and they are usually are controlled by the government, technology, or a particular religion. The Hunger Games and Fahrenheit 451 are both in the dystopian fiction genre because the societies within them show the traits of a dystopia. Both of them also have characters that go against the flow of the normal world.
The worlds of The Handmaid’s Tale and The Road are complete opposites; One is an anarchical society where there is no societal structure while the other is a very well-structured world with a thoroughly defined hierarchy. Despite this, it could be argued that these two worlds are simultaneously also very similar due to the way they approach the topics of patriarchy, misogyny, and survival. Atwood and McCarthy accomplish this differently, but they achieve it using the same literary techniques and, despite one of the worlds being dystopian while the other is post-apocalyptic, making heavy usage of descriptive writing.
The government in Huxley's Brave New World and Atwood's Handmaid's Tale, both use different methods of obtaining control over individuals, but are both similar in the fact that humans are looked at as instruments. Human's bodies, in both novels, are looked at as objects and not directly as living things with feelings. In both societies the individuals have very little and are controlled strictly by the government. In Handmaid's Tale and Brave New World, through issues of employment, class systems, and the control of reproduction, Atwood and Huxley forewarn that in an all-powerful society, it is destined to become corrupt.
The oxford dictionary refers to the word “utopia” as being a place of “paradise, heaven on earth” as well as perfection. It can be labeled as a place that is the most desirable in any nation on earth and can sum up what we as humans search for. “A Handmaid’s Tale” depicts a twisted, yet not to far off, version of our country not to long ago when we lived in the opposite of this so-called paradise. No word can describe this story better than the opposite of utopia, a “dystopian” society. The entire U.S. government fell into a dystopian-type ruling when the very laws created by the government served to treat women as no more than maids and harlots. In this chaotic story, Margaret Atwood depicts a society where men and women fall into the rules of the old testament based on older beliefs describing women as lesser individuals compared to men. Atwood shows the similarities between the Republic of Gilead and the way we used to see the roles of women as well as some aspects of society today. Her overall reason for creating this story is to show her readers around the world the scary truth and effects of the belittlement of women and disregarding them as more than just wives and housemaids.
The Hunger Games, a film based off of a novel written by Susan Collins, was released in March of 2012. The film, and the book it was based on, chronicles the struggles of a girl named Katniss Everdeen, a girl who lives in a poverty stricken province or “District”, until untimely circumstances forces her to play in the Hunger Games, a gladiatorial like contest where children between the ages of 12 and 18 are forced to fight to the death. A contest that was set up by an oppressive and authoritarian government, and has thus far been sustained via the forced obedience of the rebellious Districts, the brainwashing and conditioning of Districts 1 and 2, and the conditioning of the residents of its Capitol. The movie has a variety of messages, most especially in regards toward social control and social conditioning. With these ideas in mind, a case could very well be made that The Hunger Games, throughout its two hour long run time, shows a very realistic look at a socially conditioned society and what humanity can become with the right amount of conditioning and control by an authoritarian force.
Before the war handmaids had their own lives, families, and jobs but that’s all gone now; They have all been separated from their families and assigned to A Commander and his wife to have their child. Handmaids did not choose this life but it was forced upon them. The society which Offred is forced to live in shaped her in many ways. In The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood uses cultural and geographical surroundings to shape Offred's psychological and moral traits as she tries to survive the society that she is forced to live, in hopes that she can rebel and make
Margaret Atwood’s novel Oryx and Crake describes a world very different from the one we live in today, but not too far from a possible future. The story, told from the viewpoint of Snowman, possibly the only human survivor, recounts the end of days in human history. His description, given to us as flashbacks, tells of a world where technology is power, and those who lack power are doomed to a sub-par existence. This world gone mad is reminiscent of another Atwood novel written in 1986, The Handmaid’s Tale. In this story, the world of today is gone, democracy has been eradicated, and it is the elite few who control the fate of the masses. By comparing these two novels by Atwood, one can see corresponding themes dealing with governmental control, the dangers of technology, the uses of religion, and the treatment of sexuality.
From a structural perspective, movies and novels appear as polar opposites. A film uses actors, scripts, and a set in order to create a visual that can grab and keep the attention of their viewers. However, an author strives to incorporate deeper meaning into their books. Despite these differences in media, 1984 and The Hunger Games present unique, yet similar ideas.
Thesis Statement: Both 1984 by George Orwell and The Handmaid 's Tale by Margaret Atwood are similar as they are placed in dystopian societies with governments that have complete control over their citizens, however, the roles of the narrator in both novels contrast each other. In 1984, the point of view is Limited Omniscient while the point of view in The Handmaid 's Tale is first person.
In The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood, Offred was taken from her husband and child, brainwashed, and then forced into a new house where her sole purpose is to be a walking uterus. In a Brave New World by Aldus Huxley, people are made in a laboratory, no one cares about family, and everyone is high on soma. These two books are both different, but are also very similar. The main thing they have in common is that they are a dystopian society, the government controls everyone, and nobody has the freedom to do/live the way they want. However, why is it that so many authors write books like this? Where the world is controlled by terrible dictatorships, only the people higher up benefit, and the normal every day citizen is screwed? I believe that
Atwood needs to make the reader relate to the main character, to get inside the thoughts and feelings. So she uses certain style, for instance, to make the reader relate more to the character, she would have phrased that sentence: I need to make you relate to Offred, to get inside her head, and understand her thoughts and feelings. This sort of personal narrative of the thought process is the style of The Handmaid’s Tale. You learn Offred’s motivations and they are so perfectly articulated that you begin to yearn for the same things she does, and to despise the same things she does. This kind of personal relationship is necessary for the setting of the story. The best way to explain this future society and it’s rules and to make the reader truly have an emotional response to it, is to put the reader right into that society and let them feel what it’s like.
In Margaret Atwood’s novel The Handmaid’s Tale, social turmoil after a staged terrorist attack has led to a totalitarian Christian regime. In this dystopian future, the roles of men and women are much different than in today’s society. In The Handmaid’s Tale, women are unequal because they have no choice about their bodies, their dress, or their relationships.