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Friday, May 6, 2011

Welcome to Gilead

Reading The Handmaid's Tale in class. In it, Atwood describes a society in which a totalitarian theocracy has stripped women in what used to be the United States of their rights -- this is done "for the greater good" when the regime decides that women can no longer be allowed to control their own reproductive lives. Good thing that nightmare is totally imaginary.

I used to think of my body as an instrument, of pleasure, or a means of transportation, or an implement for the accomplishment 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.
The Handmaid's Tale, ch. 13

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