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Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale

Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale

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The Handmaid’s Tale tells the story of Offred, a handmaid in the totalitarian Republic of Gilead. She is allowed to leave the home of the Commander and his wife only once a day to visit the market, whose signs are now pictures not words because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a month and pray the Commander makes her pregnant because handmaids are valued only if able to have children. Margaret Atwood’s dystopian tale was first published more than 30 years ago, but, as David Isaacs shows in this concise, compelling guide, the issues it raises are as relevant now as they were when it was written. 

All you need to know about Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale is in this advanced guide to the text. Connell Guides are advanced guide books that offer sophisticated analysis and broad critical perspectives for higher-level GCSE and A Level English Literature students. Written by leading academics, Connell Guides are clear, concise and beautifully designed to help students understand, and enjoy, great works of literature. They are perfect for coursework, revision and exam preparation. Connell Guides are also great reads themselves scholarly, yet approachable and entertaining.
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-911187-68-4


A summary of the plot 

Is The Handmaid’s Tale a feminist novel? 

Why does Puritanism feature in the novel? 

What kind of novel is The Handmaid’s Tale

What is the novel telling us about power? 

How is the story told? 

Why do flowers feature so much in The Handmaid’s Tale

So why does Offred tell us about her life? 

What do we make of Offred? 

Historical notes on The Handmaid’s Tale 
Five Facts about The Handmaid’s Tale 
Further reading

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