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Copy of Comparison of dystopian societies in 1984 and The Handmaid’s

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Chiedza Peni

on 9 December 2013

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Transcript of Copy of Comparison of dystopian societies in 1984 and The Handmaid’s

Comparison of dystopian societies in 1984 and The Handmaid’s Tale
1984 tells the story of the protagonist of Winston, a frail and influential victim to The Party, the tyrannous government which runs Airstrip One. Many aspects of The Party’s society are illogical, but even more so are the laws and how they are implemented
“Beside the main gateway there are six more bodies hanging, by the necks, their hands tied in front of them, their heads in white bags tipped sideways on their shoulders”
"Dystopias essentially deal with power: power as the prohibition or perversion of
human potential; power in its absolute form that, to quote from 1984, tolerates
no flaws in the pattern it imposes on society." - Amin Malak
Both are repressive systems which have marginalized sexuality as a means of social control.
In 1984...
...sexual repression is used to keep the population angry and tense, and thus easier to control.
In Handmaids Tale...
..it places fertile women in a servile role to wealthy couples, in a futuristic representation of a class system, making the ability to breed the preserve of the wealthy.
Chiedza Peni
English: Standard level

Both George Orwell’s 1984 and Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale have been shown to be warning of future societies; where civilians are forced to live by the totalitarian government’s rules and for certain purposes to ensure the government’s own goals and aspirations
The Handmaid's Tale
Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale is a logical continuation of Orwell’s novel. Atwood places her totalitarian society in the 1980s, the exact setting of1984. The society of The Handmaid’s Tale, like 1984, has specific groups for individuals to belong to.

(men/military=survival; women/fertility=survival, men/not military=servant, women/no fertility=servant)
Language Comparison
This is done in '1984' through using 'Newspeak', a reduced version of today's Standard English, or 'Oldspeak'. As the Oceanian powers have omitted words from people's vocabulary they are unable to speak words The Party deems unsuitable or create unorthodox thoughts.
Gilead creates an official vocabulary that ignores and warps reality in order to serve the needs of the new society’s elite.
Language is used as a form of state control
"Even the slogans will change. How could you have a slogan "Freedom is Slavery" When the concept of freedom has been abolished."
"Blessed be the fruit."
“But who’s fault was it? Aunt Helena says. Her fault, her fault, her fault, we chant in unison. Who led them on? She did, she did, she did”
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