The Handmaid's Tale๐Ÿ’ Flashcards Preview

ENGLISH LIT Paper 2๐Ÿ“š > The Handmaid's Tale๐Ÿ’ > Flashcards

Flashcards in The Handmaid's Tale๐Ÿ’ Deck (20):
1

Atwood quote foundations for her story

Nations never build apparently radical forms of government on foundations that aren't there already

(Relevant to past e.g. Nazism, present, future e.g cold wars/North Korea)

2

Atwood quote hope in Offred's recordings

There is an act of hope: every recorded story implies a future reader

3

Ownership of people

Handmaids treated like children and animals despite being valued for fertility "cattle prods"

'OfFred'

Jenine had nothing, regime gives structure and a sense of belonging

No one allowed to love, men sexually oppressed too

4

Offred's rebellion/power

"I refuse to say my"- won't accept her position. Manipulates language in head (wins at scrabble)

Can imagine in her mind, hopes Luke is alive but may be unreliable narrator. Self aware "my indoctrination"

Relationship with Nick/commander, power over Serena Joy. The brothel (freedom is a paradox)

The butter used for vanity

"I am above him"- sexual domination or power stance?

5

No freedom in society

The Eyes, always watching. Spreads paranoia

People deindividuated to uniforms and colours "doubled"

Men and women deprived of sexual freedom/love

Previous oppressive regimes contextually are now tourists in Gilead, decline of USA's progression

Control of language, words used only to reinforce regime (Orwellian)

6

Oppression of women

Marthas and Handmaids all viewed lesser than men, woman's fault even is man is infertile. "No such thing as a sterile man" Wives deemed useless because of their infertility, have to endure ceremony

Given to regime for birthing "two legged wombs"

Prevented from reading and knowledge (power) legally no rights

Blamed for gang rape (Jenine) slut shaming, link to original sin

7

Corruption

Black market

'Salvaging' justified as saving people, torture

"For every rule there is always an exception" Aunts can read, write and break rules (coffee) Orwellian

Paying for prayers, Gilead makes money from the scared

8

Manipulation of religion and past/justification of regime

"There's a scriptual precedent"- bible used to validate Gilead

Sexism of past validates Gilead for 'own protection' but is equally sexist by being repressive in sexuality

History manipulated, anecdotes of danger on women. Independence day removed/Labour day changed

"There is more than one kind of freedom...freedom to and freedom from"

9

No escape/preventing rebellion

"Nothing safer than death"- lack of hope

The wall acts as visual reminder

"We try not to hear them"- bystander effect, regimes continue

10

Normalised regime, newness

"The young ones are the most fanatical"- no exposure to previous freedom so try and dominate what they know

"Habits are hard to break"- difficult to change society

"It has taken so little time to change our minds"- can happen anywhere, desensitised to Gilead (hanging bodies, ceremony)

11

Regressive society

Doctors, scientists punished
Less women's rights (abortion)
Homosexual people targeted
Freedoms of smoking, education contrasted "burning books"
Educational locations, University used for control (red centre)

12

Irony of regime

Is not christian! Rape/murder
Murdering citizens whilst population is in sheer decline

No respect for valuable Handmaid's

Bible/churches not used anymore, in case people discover it doesn't follow the teachings?

Man executed for rape, ironic that regime is based in this

The angels (connotations of protection) maintain fear and control

13

Blind obedience

"Headless sheep"

In the crowd Offred follows blindly "I want to tear, gouge"

14

Resistance and rebellion

"May day" and Underground femaleroad (relates to slavery)

The woman before Offed "nolite te bastardes carborundorum"

Serena Joy orchestrates the affair (smokes too) which Offred complies with and the doctor's offer

Offred's escape with family

15

Lack of resistance

"Ignoring isn't the same as ignorance" choosing not to rebel

Offred doesn't join resistance movement, longs for Nick

Females could unite as a front against the regime but they turn against each other, encouraged to spy on each other

16

Brainwashing

"Her fault, her fault"-Offred believes at times, conditioning

Thoughts back, "Aunt Lydia would have said", brainwashing

Corruption (against pornography and sexism protests) taken literally like Bible, rhetorical questions ensure agreement


17

The powerful

"He has something we don't have"- power in having something (penis, knowledge?) books visible in study

Hierarchical society, benefits those in power "amazing what people can get used to...[with] a few compensations"

Offred has power over commander? Sexually? In knowledge? Lets him win but he also does and still makes her have sex with him

The state "fear is a powerful stimulant"

18

Repeating past events

"Context is all"- normal is relative concept e.g concentration camps not learned from past

"How easy it is to invent a humanity" reference to previous regimes too

HISTORICAL NOTES
Sexism still evident, no questions asked to challenge?

19

Offred's surrender
Ambiguity

"I resign my body freely, to the use of others"

Does she mean this or just playing a role still

20

Thought repression

Thinking can hurt your chances and I intend to last