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Characters and Symbols Handmaid's Tale

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In this novel it is clear that women do not get any respect at all. The only thing that does actually matter is what the women can do for men. Thus men see themselves as 'higher individuals' than what women are, and the reason why women even became handmaids was because the law demanded it, it was never their choice. Handmaids were one of several groups a woman could be divided into, and all women were judged differently. That being said, it appears that women in the story had no rights at all. Although both genders were barren, only the women were accused for this. So their sick way of actually trying to solve this was to create 'handmaids' which in turn could cause the men to propagate.


A Martha's job consisted of everything from cleaning, shopping and cooking, which may not be the most amusing job, but it didn't matter. You choose that rather than being raped over and over by your own boss, such as Handmaids had to endure in the story, Handmaids had an extremely hard time in this story as they were both raped over and over again and their children were then robbed from them, sickly enough. I guess when you sit in such a seat it automatically becomes that you feel sorry for people sitting in the same seat. So from what you notice in the story, all the Martha's are kind to each other in any case. You are probably more or less forced to try and stay together when twisted things like this is happening.

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Red clothes

You also get a view of why different types of clothing colors were used, for example Red was used by Handmaids just because it was shown as some kind of conception, and also sexual activity with the men in the story, and as said before, the women were treated extremely bad in the story, and could be perceived as being some kind of property to the state, and not their own person, all this because no children were born, so in other words, a handmaid's 'task in life' was only to become pregnant and give birth to children for the men in the story. But considering all this, even though it was not the handmaid's own will, people looked at them with judging eyes.

Brown clothes

So to talk a little more about the colors of clothes there were also those who wore brown clothes, and in this case it was the Aunts, Aunts unlike other women were not seen as less than people, and unlike other women the Aunts had something to say about different issues, So you can say that brown clothes were a sign of power, After all, it was the Aunts who trained and disciplined Handmaids, and when they did not act accordingly they were punished in different ways in form of getting hit and getting burned.

Blue clothes

The last color of clothing we should talk about is blue, so to begin with, blue was considered to be a sign of submissiveness. , so in fact, even though the women who were the wives of the men acted like they were superior to everyone else, they actually were not. They too were under the men, and even they were punished when they made mistakes. For example in the series, the woman Serena Joy gets into a dispute with her husband, and because of that she loses one of her fingers. This story is extremly sick, Women should definitely not be treated this way. Because women, they are exactly as worthy as men. If not more.

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Characters and Symbols Handmaid’s Tale. (2022, November 25). Edubirdie. Retrieved March 5, 2024, from
“Characters and Symbols Handmaid’s Tale.” Edubirdie, 25 Nov. 2022,
Characters and Symbols Handmaid’s Tale. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 5 Mar. 2024].
Characters and Symbols Handmaid’s Tale [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Nov 25 [cited 2024 Mar 5]. Available from:
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