Rebellion in The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood Essay

Rebellion in The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood Essay

Length: 2652 words (7.6 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Rebellion in The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood

'Rebel' is a term, which is highly weighed down with emotion. In
society today we perceive a rebel to be a figure opposing a much
stronger majority. We distinguish the rebel to be a character who
fights for his/her own ideals. We see a person that will do anything
almost being ruthless to destroy the boundaries set up against him/her
by the stronger mass. We witness the rebel as an individual who
deliberately defines a battlefield and two fighting fronts. The rebel
is constantly is resisting. The only way he/she can defend his morals
and values are to strike the greater that condemns his/her values and
morals. Unfortunately today there are many misconceptions and
preconceptions relating to the essence of a true rebel. Society tends
to comprehend the rebel to be figure fighting on the front lines,
spilling blood for his cause. Especially the media has delivered this
image of a rebel. We must acknowledge the fact there are other forms
of rebels and rebellions. It is not fair to say that the form of rebel
that is described above is not valid, but still we must make a
suitable distinction. We must not always consider the rebel to be an
individual like 'William Wallace' who fought for his country's
independence by using violence as his primary weapon. In the course of
history we have witnessed another category of rebels. Characters such
as Mahatma Ghandi, Dr. Martin Luther King and Emmeline Pankhurst all
gave birth to another form of rebel, the rebel that fought for his
values passively. They did not confront the enemy with the sword but
with words.

The novel 'The Handmaids Tale' by Margaret Atwood tells the story of a
near future oppressive society govern...

... middle of paper ...

...poke out against them in the
loudest voice possible. Offred's cassettes did more than just speak
her voice. I feel that the true reason why Offred did not assign her
name is because she wanted to speak universally. Offred wanted to
speak in the name of all handmaids.

In studying Offred's rebellion we can see that she suffered an
internal conflict. Offred's plight is always human as well as
ideological. She wanted to rebel but at the same time she was scared
of loosing herself in the process. Offred had to win the conflict
within her before she could start the external battle. Offred won this
conflict and decided that her humanity was the risk for a great cause,

'As long as women consent to be unjustly governed, they will be; but
directly women say: "We withhold our consent," we will not be governed
any longer as long as government is unjust.'

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Rebellion in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Essay

- Rebellion in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale "Rebels defy the rules of society, risking everything to retain their humanity. If the world Atwood depicts is chilling, if 'God is losing,' the only hope for optimism is a vision that includes the inevitability of human struggle against the prevailing order." -Joyce Johnson- Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale analyzes human nature by presenting an internal conflict in Offred: acceptance of current social trends (victim mentality) -vs- resistance for the sake of individual welfare and liberties (humanity)....   [tags: Handmaids Tale]

Free Essays
2092 words (6 pages)

The Handmaid 's Tale By Margaret Atwood Essay examples

- In Margaret Atwood 's The Handmaid 's Tale, society is meant to have overcome the sinful tendencies of modern culture. People who would rebel against the new status quo are broken through torture and conditioning. The character Moira acts as a symbol of the main characters, Offred 's, hope and need for rebelliousness. The perceived loss of this hope causes Offred to begin a spiral of indifference which leads her to cling to Nick as a replacement and a way to find meaning in an extra meaningless life....   [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]

Powerful Essays
992 words (2.8 pages)

Margaret Atwood 's The Handmaid 's Tale Essay

- If this were to be a world similar to that of Offred’s in Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, then this very essay would never even exist. This would be a world in which a woman would certainly not be allowed to sit at a computer and type out her thoughts. Writing, speaking, singing; these are all ways a woman, or any other person, can communicate their own feelings. However, being able to communicate one’s thoughts is not a privilege women can enjoy in Gilead. Women are allowed neither to read nor write, and even their everyday speech must be restrained....   [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]

Powerful Essays
1046 words (3 pages)

Essay on Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale

- I Tell, Therefore I Am In Margaret Atwood’s, The Handmaid’s Tale, women are subjected to unthinkable oppression. Practically every aspect of their life is controlled, and they are taught to believe that their only purpose is to bear children for their commander. These “handmaids” are not allowed to read, write or speak freely. Any type of expression would be dangerous to the order of the Gilead’s strict society. They are conditioned to believe that they are safer in this new society. Women are supposedly no longer exploited or disrespected (pornography, rape, etc.) as they once were....   [tags: Margaret Atwood The Handmaid's Tale]

Free Essays
878 words (2.5 pages)

Relationships and Religion in "The Handmaids Tale" by Margaret Atwood Essay

- In the novel The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood the themes of Religion and inter-human relationships are the themes that are most evident in the text. This novel shows the possibility of the existence of an all-powerful governing system. This is portrayed through the lack of freedom for women in society, from being revoked of their right to own any money or property, to being stripped of their given names and acquiring names such as Offred and Ofglen, symbolizing women’s dependant existence, only being defined by the men which they belong to....   [tags: Handmaids Tale, Margaret Atwood, relationships, re]

Powerful Essays
613 words (1.8 pages)

Essay about Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace

- Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace Alias Grace is the most recent novel by Margaret Atwood, Canada’s most prominent modern novelist. The novel is, as Atwood writes in her afterword, ‘a work of fiction, although it is based on reality’(538) centred on the case of Victorian Canada’s most celebrated murderess, Grace Marks, an immigrant Irish servant girl. The manner in which Atwood imaginatively reconfigures historical fact in order to create a subversive text which ‘writes back’ to both the journals of a Canadian literary ancestor, and to Canada’s nineteenth century self -image, illustrates what critic Linda Hutcheon has called ‘the use of irony as a powerful subversive rule in the rethinking and...   [tags: Margaret Atwood Alias Grace Essays]

Powerful Essays
1661 words (4.7 pages)

Essay on The Handmaids Tale, by Margaret Atwood

- In Margaret Atwoods ‘The Handmaids Tale’, we hear of one women’s posting ‘Offred’ in the Republic of Gilead. A society based around Biblical philosophies as a way to validate inhumane state practises. In a society of declining birth rates, fertile women are chosen to become Handmaids, walking incubators, whose role in life is to reproduce for barren wives of commanders. Older women, gay men, and barren Handmaids are sent to the colonies to clean toxic waste. Fear is power. Fear is ever-present in Gilead; it is implemented through violence and force....   [tags: Literary Analysis, Summary]

Powerful Essays
735 words (2.1 pages)

The 's Handmaid 's Tale Essay

- The Unorthodox Characters of The Handmaid’s Tale “Rebels defy the rules of society, risking everything to retain their humanity” a quote by Joyce Johnson. Margret Atwood’s A Handmaid’s Tale is a futuristic novel, set in the Republic of Gilead that is a totalitarian Christian theocracy. The men and women are all separated into castes: the men by achievements, and the women by fertility. The novel is based around one of the Handmaids, Offred. She is specifically used to bear children, and that is all in this future....   [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood]

Powerful Essays
1240 words (3.5 pages)

The Handmaid 's Tale And Kindred Essay

- In regards to civic responsibility, women should have a choice on their level of involvement and contributions to society. Every woman has different circumstances and thus makes it impossible for one standard of involvement to be set. Every individual woman has a different level of comfort in regards to political involvement, work place involvement, reproductive involvement, and familial involvement; all of which contribute to the well being of society in different ways. Authors Margaret Atwood and Octavia Butler both support the idea of different roles for different women in their books The Handmaid’s Tale and Kindred....   [tags: The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood, Slavery]

Powerful Essays
1509 words (4.3 pages)

Essay on The Dystopia in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale

- The Dystopia in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Offred is a Handmaid in what used to be the United States, now the theocratic Republic of Gilead. In order to create Gilead's idea of a more perfect society, they have reverted to taking the Book of Genesis at its word. Women no longer have any privileges; they cannot work, have their own bank accounts, or own anything. The also are not allowed to read or even chose who they want to marry. Women are taught that they should be subservient to men and should only be concerned with bearing children....   [tags: Handmaid's Tale Essays]

Powerful Essays
1097 words (3.1 pages)