Tuesday, April 10, 2007
A classic feminist dystopia, The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood is set in a not too distant future where women are strictly controlled. The protagonist, Offred (Of Fred) a handmaid whose role in a family and society is to bear a child and then turn the child over to the wife to rear it. In this reality, women have no say in their lives (Offred was basically kidnapped into her role) and ever aspect of their day from where they go to what they wear. Infertility is rampant and the handmaid's are in a precarious position, being both the other woman and the only hope of producing a child. A chilling, well-written book that has some important things to say, even twenty years after it was first published.