Monday, August 19, 2019

Gilead: A Credible Society Essay -- Essays Papers

Gilead: A Credible Society In Margaret Atwood's novel The Handmaid's Tale, a society whose purposes are functional and practical roles is depicted. In Atwood's eyes, a society like Gilead's was perfectly credible, and in many ways I agree with her. The purpose of writing about such a radical society is not for one to panic into thinking that this could happen any time, nor is it for one to completely discard the idea. Instead, it's purpose is solely to warn us of the dangers already present in our own society, such as the uncontrollable violence that is going on, apparent on crimes, wars, racism, etc. Offred, the narrator, tells us about a society which came into existence in the early 80's as a direct consequence of overlooking the many problems in its previous society. Before the first steps were being taken to actually destroy the society that few knew was already on the edge of becoming anarchical, there was foreshadowing of what would happen right beneath the eyes of everyone. Riots were going on all the time, people were vanishing, and later women lost their jobs and their money. All these things happened without people's objections, because they were simply ignoring it, possibly hoping that it could not get worst. As Offred later describes how they faced up to those problems, "We lived, as usual, by ignoring. Ignoring isn't the same as ignorance, you have to work at it" (74). This quote described what people did when they were fearsome of something, which they had already permitted to become the usual, bothered them. Ignoring what one fears makes that thing seem nor mal, and usually one becomes less afraid of things as they become normal. However, if things are ignored to an extreme and one does not care to draw the line, things can get out of hand when it is already too late. Offred regrets having been like the rest of the society that was banished, because looking back, what was happening then was in fact foreshadowing the future, Nothing changes instantaneously: in a gradually heating bathtub you'd be boiled to death before you knew it. There were stories in the newspapers, of course, corpses in ditches or the woods, bludgeoned to death or mutilated, . . . The newspaper stories were like dreams to us, bad dreams dreamt by others . . . they were awful without being believable. . . . they had a dimension that was no... ...illions of Americans crying out. Nor would it be possible that someone kill the president by simply entering his house. The problem is that these differences mean little when there are also many similarities. The purpose Atwood saw in her book is to warn us of our own dangers, not to compare them to a fictitious story and keep ignoring things. As I said before, I do not think we will ever have such an awful transformation in our lives, but I do not think something similar is impossible to occur. Because we are all being blind, like the other society was blind, and we ignore things like violence, we are building ourselves a path with no solid foundations. If we continue doing so, the tendency is for this path to fall apart. Even if this actually happened, it does not necessarily mean that we would have to give in to losing what is ours by all rights. Nevertheless, if we fall in a trend where everything is so casual that we ignore what is going on, something else could hap pen where we could forget to draw the limit and make it stop, as the society preceding Gilead did. WORKS CITED Atwood, Margaret. The Handmaid's Tale. 28th ed. New York: Ballantine Books, 1991. Gilead: A Credible Society Essay -- Essays Papers Gilead: A Credible Society In Margaret Atwood's novel The Handmaid's Tale, a society whose purposes are functional and practical roles is depicted. In Atwood's eyes, a society like Gilead's was perfectly credible, and in many ways I agree with her. The purpose of writing about such a radical society is not for one to panic into thinking that this could happen any time, nor is it for one to completely discard the idea. Instead, it's purpose is solely to warn us of the dangers already present in our own society, such as the uncontrollable violence that is going on, apparent on crimes, wars, racism, etc. Offred, the narrator, tells us about a society which came into existence in the early 80's as a direct consequence of overlooking the many problems in its previous society. Before the first steps were being taken to actually destroy the society that few knew was already on the edge of becoming anarchical, there was foreshadowing of what would happen right beneath the eyes of everyone. Riots were going on all the time, people were vanishing, and later women lost their jobs and their money. All these things happened without people's objections, because they were simply ignoring it, possibly hoping that it could not get worst. As Offred later describes how they faced up to those problems, "We lived, as usual, by ignoring. Ignoring isn't the same as ignorance, you have to work at it" (74). This quote described what people did when they were fearsome of something, which they had already permitted to become the usual, bothered them. Ignoring what one fears makes that thing seem nor mal, and usually one becomes less afraid of things as they become normal. However, if things are ignored to an extreme and one does not care to draw the line, things can get out of hand when it is already too late. Offred regrets having been like the rest of the society that was banished, because looking back, what was happening then was in fact foreshadowing the future, Nothing changes instantaneously: in a gradually heating bathtub you'd be boiled to death before you knew it. There were stories in the newspapers, of course, corpses in ditches or the woods, bludgeoned to death or mutilated, . . . The newspaper stories were like dreams to us, bad dreams dreamt by others . . . they were awful without being believable. . . . they had a dimension that was no... ...illions of Americans crying out. Nor would it be possible that someone kill the president by simply entering his house. The problem is that these differences mean little when there are also many similarities. The purpose Atwood saw in her book is to warn us of our own dangers, not to compare them to a fictitious story and keep ignoring things. As I said before, I do not think we will ever have such an awful transformation in our lives, but I do not think something similar is impossible to occur. Because we are all being blind, like the other society was blind, and we ignore things like violence, we are building ourselves a path with no solid foundations. If we continue doing so, the tendency is for this path to fall apart. Even if this actually happened, it does not necessarily mean that we would have to give in to losing what is ours by all rights. Nevertheless, if we fall in a trend where everything is so casual that we ignore what is going on, something else could hap pen where we could forget to draw the limit and make it stop, as the society preceding Gilead did. WORKS CITED Atwood, Margaret. The Handmaid's Tale. 28th ed. New York: Ballantine Books, 1991.

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