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How successful is The Handmaid's Taleas a piece of science fiction?

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  • Essay length: 938 words
  • Submitted: 14/08/2003
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GCSE Margaret Atwood

The first 200 words of this essay...

English Literature

Beth Jackson

How successful is The Handmaid's Tale

as a piece of science fiction?

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood like many other science fiction novels draws on many problems in today's society and elaborates on them, showing what could happen in the future if we do not recognise these problems. It is predominately a novel of prophecy and warning.

The novel portrays a grim future when the United States no longer exists. A highly organised group of right wing religious conservatives succeeds in setting off a revolution. They create a new society known as Gilead where women are stripped of all the freedoms that the feminist movement secured for them. The new Gilead society forces previously independent women to live by Old Testament values.

The novel is set in American in the not too distant future, Atwood describes events in the past which have actually happened such as the Women's liberation movement of the 1960's and 70's which makes the novel sound truthful and believable. Although the events in the novel are far fetched nothing is so far fetched that it couldn't happen. Long and detailed

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