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Margaret Atwood Essay Topics & Paper Examples

Margaret Atwood; Cat’s Eye Analysis- Refraction and Self

“Our commonsense explanations of the world and ourselves are problematised by Atwood through her novel. Nothing is quite as it seems, when we look at anything (in a mirror, in the past, at others) it is refracted as if through water.” Discuss the ideas and issues in the novel in relation to this statement, paying particular attention to the techniques and narrative elements used to show this. Our commonsense explanations of the world are based on the absolutes in our lives. Ways of seeing have been socially constructed embedded with values and attitudes that influence our behaviour and view of the world and ourselves. Reality cannot be captured and is interpreted differently by every individual as if refracted through water….

Gender and Power in the Handmaids Tale

Topic Question: What understandings of the issue of gender and power are gained from characterization of men and women constructed in the text studied?The notion of power is a fundamental building block of any ancient, modern or futuristic society. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood is an example of the distribution of power across a futuristic society, specifically a patriarchal dystopia. The power which women hold in this society is minimal compared to that held by men, but this is not an unquestionable reality. The issue of gender and power and highly subjective by nature and throughout this novel this fact is emphasized and the topics interrelated. Women demonstrate this power with their possession and use of language, sexuality, choice…

Themes in the novel ‘The Handmaids Tale’

Gilead takes environmental control to an extreme, and controls almost all aspects of it’s inhabitant’s lives. The handmaids are controlled within society by means of the self worth lowering ignorance, de-humanizing abasement, and the fear instilled by strict consequences to illegal actions. ‘Control’ is a major theme throughout the novel – whether it be by the regimentation of life, the strict communication laws or the way in which people are stripped of their individuality. The whole environment in Gilead is carefully monitored and observed to ensure the ‘smooth’ running of society. Suicides appear to be a major threat to civilization as they serve as an ‘escape route’ out of the oppressive lifestyle – therefore precautions are taken to ensure that…