Monday, January 20, 2020
Comparing Brave New World and Handmaids Tale :: comparison compare contrast essays
Comparison and Contrast between Brave New World and Handmaid's Tale The government in Huxley's Brave New World and Atwood's Handmaid's Tale, both use different methods of obtaining control over individuals, but are both similar in the fact that humans are looked at as instruments. Human's bodies, in both novels, are looked at as objects and not directly as living things with feelings. In both societies the individuals have very little and are controlled strictly by the government. In Handmaid's Tale and Brave New World, through issues of employment, class systems, and the control of reproduction, Atwood and Huxley forewarn that in an all-powerful society, it is destined to become corrupt. Both novels treat humans as items and not as human beings. In HMT, the entire structure of the Gilead society was built around the single goal of reproduction. Gilead is a society facing a crisis of radically dropping birthrates and to solve the problem it forces state control on the means of reproduction. Controlling women's bodies can succeed only by controlling the women themselves. The society's political order requires the overthrow of women. The government strips the women of the right to vote, the right to hold property or jobs and the right to read. The women's ovaries and womb become a `national resource' to the society. Women cease to be treated as individuals and rather as potential mothers. Women internalize the state created attitude even independent women like the narrator of HMT, Offred. At one point lying in a bathtub and looking at her naked form, Offred states; " I used to thin of my body as an instrument, of pleasure, or a means of transportation, or an implement for the accomplish of my will ... now the flesh arranges itself differently. I'm a cloud, congealed around a central object, the shape of a pear, which is hard and more real than I am and glows red within its translucent wrapping." Offred contrasts the way she used to think about her body to the way she thinks about it now. Before, her body was an instrument, an extension of herself. But now her self no longer matters and her body is only important because of its `central object', her womb which can bear a child.