The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

Length: 435 words (1.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
Moira is Offred's best friend. She is a part of Offred's life in all
three time phases of the novel. In the "time before" they were
easy-going college students together, and they meet again at the Red
Center. Moira is a strong-willed woman who is not intimidated by the
regime. She possesses an irreverent sense of humor and is like a
breath of fresh air in the stilted, enclosed, fearful world of the
Center. The first thing she says to Offred when they meet again is
simply, "This is a loony bin " (ch. 13). This reveals Moira's
down-to-earth nature, her willingness to describe things the way they
are. Moira has a strength that makes Offred feel safer just because of
her presence. There is something indomitable about her. When Moira
first tells Offred about her plan to escape, Offred cannot bear the
thought of being without her. But Moira is determined. Unlike Offred,
she will not put up with how she is treated. She has the courage to
resist. Even when she is whipped on the soles of her feet after her
failed attempt to escape, she is not broken. She simply comes up with
a better plan and escapes again. It seems as if nothing can break her
or stop her from being herself.

After her escape, Moira becomes a kind of mythic figure for the others
at the Red Center, a symbol of defiance and resistance. Because of
Moira, Offred says, "the Aunts were less fearsome and more absurd.
Their power had a flaw in it" (ch.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood." 14 Aug 2018

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Essay

- Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Love of God replaces love of humanity in Margaret Atwood’s, The Handmaid’s Tale. Offred’s recollections of her past life, especially of her husband, are ones filled with passion and happiness as she remembers his tenderness towards her. Much more emphasis is put on the physical human form in her memories; she often remembers lying with her husband while she wears little or no clothing. Appreciation of the human form is an essential component of loving humanity....   [tags: Margaret Atwood Handmaid Tale Essays]

Research Papers
1418 words (4.1 pages)

Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Essay examples

- Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Chapter nine opening section two of the novel is mainly recalling the last chapters and about the narrator rediscovering herself, surfacing the truth. In section one we see the narrator talking in the present tense in a very descriptive form, outlining the novel. However in section two we see her talking in the past tense demonstrating the stories she is telling. The separation between the human and the natural world and the narrator’s struggle with language most directly portrays the novel's dualities....   [tags: Margaret Atwood Handmaid's Tale Essays]

Research Papers
1712 words (4.9 pages)

Representation of Colors in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Essay

- Representation of Colors in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Imagine if you can, living in a world that tells you what you are to wear, where to live, as well as your position and value to society. In Margaret Atwood's novel, The Handmaid's Tale, she shows us the Republic of Gilead does just that. Offred, the main character, is a Handmaid, whose usefulness is her ovaries. Handmaids are ordered to live in a house with a Commander, his wife, and once a month attempt to become pregnant by the Commander....   [tags: Handmaid's Tale Atwood Margaret Essays]

Research Papers
1784 words (5.1 pages)

Society in The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood Essay

- “Atwood’s feminism is an integral part of her critical approach, just as her concept of criticism is inseparable from her creative work” Walter Pache (1). A dystopia is a fictional society, usually existing in a future time period, in which the condition of life is extremely difficult due to deprivation, oppression or terror. In most dystopian fiction, a corrupt government creates or sustains the poor quality of life, often conditioning the masses to believe the society is proper and just, even perfect....   [tags: Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood Essays]

Research Papers
2516 words (7.2 pages)

The United States as a Dystopian society in Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid’s Tale

- In the Days of Anarchy To live in a country such as the United States of America is considered a privilege. The liberties that American citizens are entitled to, as declared in the Constitution, makes the United States an attractive and envied democracy. It would be improbable to imagine these liberties being stripped from American society. However, Margaret Atwood depicts the United States as a dystopian society in her novel The Handmaid’s Tale. The first society is modern America, with its autonomy and liberal customs....   [tags: Margaret Atwood Handmaid's Tale]

Free Essays
1122 words (3.2 pages)

Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Essay example

- Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale In "The Handmaid's Tale", Margaret Atwood tells a saddening story about a not-to-distant future where toxic chemicals and abuses of the human body have resulted in many men and women alike becoming sterile. The main character, Offred, gives a first person encounter about her subservient life as a handmaid in the Republic of Gilead, a republic formed after a bloody coup against the United States government. She and her fellow handmaids are fertile women that the leaders of Gilead, the Commanders, enslave to ensure their power and the population of the Republic....   [tags: Atwood Handmaid's Tale Essays]

Research Papers
1236 words (3.5 pages)

Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale Essay

- Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale The Historical Notes are important in the way we perceive the novel as they answer many important questions raised by the novel and also enhance some of the novels main themes. The first question it answers is the one raised at the end of the novel; that is whether Offred is stepping up into the,'darkness,' or the, 'light.' The reader finds out that Offred escaped Gilead, presumably into Canada, with the help of the,'Underground Femaleroad.' The reader also learns that it was Nick who orchestrated her escape, using his position as a member of the Eyes....   [tags: Atwood Handmaid's Tale Essays]

Research Papers
978 words (2.8 pages)

Symbolism and Loss of Identity in The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

- Symbolism and Loss of Identity in The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood In Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale, Offred recounts the story of her life and that of others in Gilead, but she does not do so alone. The symbolic meanings found in the dress code of the women, the names/titles of characters, the absence of the mirror, and the smell and hunger imagery aid her in telling of the repugnant conditions in the Republic of Gilead. The symbols speak with a voice of their own and in decibels louder than Offred can ever dare to use....   [tags: Handmaid's Tale Essays Atwood ]

Research Papers
934 words (2.7 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]

Research Papers
1097 words (3.1 pages)

Essay on The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

- The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood In every human beings life, one is given freedoms. With freedom comes responsibility, consequence following close behind. Sometimes this freedom is not freedom to do, but freedom from harm. The extreme form of this would form a Garrison mentality. A Garrison mentality is a situation in which a society protects but also confines an individual. “There is more than one kind of freedom, said Aunt Lydia. Freedom to and freedom from. In the days of anarchy, it was freedom to....   [tags: Papers]

Free Essays
730 words (2.1 pages)


However, it is debatable whether Moira continues in this heroic role
throughout the novel. When Offred sees her again at Jezebel's, Moira
is still in one sense her old irrepressible self. But in another sense
she has changed. She has made her accommodation with the regime, and
has no plans to escape from her role as a sex servant. The position
allows her to have as much sex with other women as she wants, and she
also has access to drugs and alcohol. Offred finds herself wanting
Moira once again to act heroically, but it seems that even Moira has
her limits. The regime offered her something she found tolerable-even
though it is sordid-and she took the opportunity. So eventually the
regime found a way of silencing even Moira.

Moira is Offred's closest friend. In the time before, they were
college students together. Then at the Red Center, the spirited,
rebellious, independent Moira refused to accept her situation. Twice
she tried twice to escape. The first time she faked illness and was
taken to a hospital, but her ploy was discovered. She was punished by
having her feet severely beaten, and then she was returned to the
Center. But this did not break her spirit, and her next attempt to
escape was successful. She tied up Aunt Elizabeth, took her uniform
and used her pass to make her way through checkpoints. After her
escape, Moira became an inspiration to Offred and the other women at
the Red Center. Moira escaped detection for about nine months, and
planned to slip over the border to Canada. But eventually she was
caught. The authorities told her she could either be sent to the
colonies or work as a kind of sex servant at Jezebel's. She chose the
latter option, which is the last place Offred sees her.
Return to