In her letter, Margaret Atwood’s tries to express the oppression that women faced in their various aspects of life. She writes this message with a lot of hope that the society perspective on women will change for the better. Longing for the days when women freedom will be equal to the men’s. This is happening during the late 1960’s and early 1970’s, and as we can see, things have changed over time. As we speak, Margaret efforts have born fruits, and that’s why in the present America, women can express themselves freely with as much freedom that men in the present day have being able to achieve.In this essay, we are going to review at least seven quotes that will help us compare and contrast the present day freedom and that of the past. Margaret gives a tale of her being a handmaid, whom while walking down the shop she is seen by people who ask “Who is it? I hear behind me/ Ofwayne. No. Ofwarren.” (Marta, p7)
And in another situation the handmaid finds a hard time introducing herself. I am Rosemary Kidd, Howard’s wife, you don’t recognize me, but we did meet (Marta, p54) in these two scenarios we see that the freedom of what to wear among American women have changed over time. During Margaret times one was harshly judged by her attire, but when you look at the modern America, a woman can freely stock her wardrobe. During her introduction as a handmaid, “There are several umbrellas in it black, for the commander, blue, for the commander’s wife, and the one assigned to me which is red.” (Marta, p8)
We also see her talking about her fancy dresses I don’t wear trousers in the office. / I could, but I don’t. (Marta, p5) In this, we see that when freedom lacks, it’s considerably thirsted for but once people have it, they take it for granted. In the modern America, the situation is no different from what it used to be during Margaret times. As we can see, people are abusing their hard-fought freedoms and concentrating on fighting for other ungranted liberties. When you look at freedom, it’s hard to define it, since it depends on one’s point of view and the situations that one finds him or herself in. “I would like a job where I was here in London and with him and everything but now and then I expect itв’s silly.” (Marta, p32)
As we can see even in the present day America the situation remains the same, making it hard to describe this freedom, you might at one point think that you have and enjoy it but only to realize later that it was not meant to be.In another scenario we see Joyce asking Kit what she wants to be when she grows up, and she says, Nuclear Physicist (Marta, p43) which is such a demanding career. And in this, we learn that no matter what freedom is not given it’s taken and usually to achieve it is not a walk in the park. And we see it compared to the modern America, whereby fighting for any freedom is a massive process, which calls for streets demonstration and boycotting, which can result in loss of life or property destruction.
We also see Marlene’s and Joyce confronting each other on a drinking date. “Who’s got to drive it on? First woman prime minister. Terrific. Aces. Right on. / You must admit. Certainly gets my vote.” (Marta, p84) What we see is that there is hope for a brighter future, with more freedom. And when we compare with the modern-day America, the situation prevails, democracy has matured, and people have become more civilized, which means voting in able leaders who will not oppress but grant people the rightful freedoms.
Dvorak, Marta. Lire Margaret Atwood: the handmaid’s tale. Presses universitaires de Rennes, 2016.