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Unseen Commentary of Handmaid's tale

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Introduction

Unseen Commentary The passage begins with 'a Ceremony', in which the narrator is involved. The event arouses many unanswered questions in readers' minds: Why does she have to do this? What is the purpose of the cold and 'white' atmosphere described? The narrator creates symbolism by portraying images throughout the passage. This also further conveys the moods and feelings of the narrator. The language and style reveals in this passage help to reveal how it allows her to emotionally escape from the situation she clearly cannot physically escape from, giving us a clearer picture of how devastating her situation is. Throughout the passage the writer has used the color 'white' as her descriptions to images in order to enhance how different objects are symbolized. ...read more.

Middle

Further in the passage, more symbolism can be found, again by using descriptions of the scene. 'Big-bellied sails, they used to say, in poems. Bellying. Propelled forward by a swollen belly.' I believe that the 'big-bellied sails' suggests the recognition of reality that the narrator is going to be pregnant. 'Propelled forward', is the action to symbolize that she lives on. Therefore, the description portrays to us that in order for the narrator to live on, she must accept the cruel reality of her being pregnant, yet she will have no control over her baby in the future. Another image drawn by her is: 'A mist of Lily of the Valley surrounds us'. ...read more.

Conclusion

The meaning of a ceremony is supposed to be moral and sacred but the forced sexual acts and the grim environment created is nothing close to what is described as 'a ceremony'. One other ironic description is when she used the phrase 'one flesh, one being'. The phrase is referred from the Bible, intended to describe sex between a man and a woman, making the process holy and respectable. However, again the text reveals a very different image of the sexual acts. The roughness and forceful acts creates this ironic image of what the narrator wants to believe in but what she is actually situated in. In conclusion, the theme of oppression is portrayed in the text through images, symbols and ironic descriptions. The tough situation not only applies to the narrator but also to the 'Commander' and 'Serena Joy'. ...read more.

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