The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)

Offred, the central character in The Handmaid’s Tale, lives in a dystopian society known as Gilead. The novel explores Offred’s experiences within the oppressive regime, her struggle to retain her individuality and memories, and her yearning for liberty. It delves into the challenges she encounters and her quest for autonomy in a masculine world where fundamental rights have been curtailed.

Author: Margaret Atwood
Project: dystopiagovernment / social injustice: feminism
Year of publication: 1985
Pages: 300





Plot Complexity: moderate
Language Complexity: moderate
Ideas Complexity: moderate

The Handmaid’s Tale can be evaluated as a novel falling within the green label. It possesses a moderately complex plot with multiple layers and subplots, exploring the oppressive society of Gilead and the protagonist’s struggle for freedom. The language used is sophisticated yet accessible, employing descriptive writing and literary devices to enhance the narrative. The ideas presented are thought-provoking, addressing themes of women’s rights, power dynamics, and the dangers of extremism. Overall, it offers a captivating reading experience that engages readers on a deeper level without reaching the complexity of the blue label.



Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, because in an age of declining births, Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their ovaries are viable. Offred can remember the years before, when she lived and made love with her husband, Luke; when she played with and protected her daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge. But all of that is gone now…

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