In the real world, different symbols are used to help people understand things, and to add different effects onto people’s lives. For example a pendent a women or man wears from the army helps someone understand what they’ve been through and helps portray them as a strong individual. In novels which may have complex story lines like The Handmaids tale it is important that these novels have some symbolism to help the reader decode what some details in the novel represent, helping them understand the plot more in-depth. Through the novel of the Handmaid Tale by Margaret Atwood, symbolism is present and that helps to enhance the story line, as well as contribute an important factor in which is helping the reader understand the novel more clearly. Some examples of the symbolism in the novel are the Hanging Wall, the apparel of the women in Gilead and the Eyes. These all contribute to the novel in an important and effective way.
The Hanging Wall is an area in Gilead where people that disobey the rules of the government are hung. They are tortured before hand and later their bodies are displayed to the public with white bags over their heads. “Beside the main gateway there are six more bodies hanging, by the necks, their hands tied in front of them, their heads in white bags tipped sideways onto their shoulders. There must have been a Men’s Salvaging early this morning. I didn’t hear the bells. Perhaps I’ve become used to them. We stop, together as if on signal and stand and look at the bodies. It doesn’t matter if we look. We’re supposed to look: this is what they are there for, hanging on the Wall. Sometimes they’ll be there for days, until there’s a new batch, so as many people as possible will have the chanc...
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... Eyes are the villains of The Handmaids tale. Additionally the symbolism of the Eyes is important because it adds fear to the characters, creates suspense for both the readers and characters and creates a vital villain in the novel.
The Handmaids tale is a novel which is filled with symbolism. Some of the main symbols of the novel are The Hanging Wall, the colours of the clothing of the different women and the Eyes. All these symbols add different features to the story which are important. Some add fear, suspense, and overall they all add an important understanding of the story line. Margaret Atwood, was able to successfully create symbols which added depth and helped with the understanding of the novel. With these symbols she used in the novel she proved the importance and the positive effects strong symbolism can have with plot and character development.
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