We have become accustomed to laughing at ‘The Simpsons’ creepily predicting current events. It’s now a part of social media folklore we have collectively accepted as the modern-day ‘Miss Cleo’ 1-900-style soothsaying.
While most of the predictions on the world’s favourite fictional family cartoon can be considered humorous, stretched and fairly spot-on, the morbidly accurate foretelling contained in Margaret Atwood‘s ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ is much more sinister, calculated and quite frankly scary as fuck.
“Ordinary, said Aunt Lydia, is what you are used to. This may not seem ordinary to you now, but after a time it will. It will become ordinary.”
Taking a walk through a show I casually watched, while my wife consumed every morsel, even I could start to connect the dots. What Ms. Atwood was doing wasn’t parlor room magic. It wasn’t some sort of leap-frog slight-of-hand. It was accurately portraying what would happen to modern society if we decided to pull the e-brake on the progress we’ve achieved and turned the goddamned car around. It was a sobering, accurate view of what we already know happens when we allow ancient belief structures to take the wheel.
“There is more than one kind of freedom,” said Aunt Lydia. “Freedom to and freedom from. In the days of anarchy, it was freedom to. Now you are being given freedom from. Don’t underrate it.
These lines are spoken by Aunt Lydia, the woman in charge of reeducating Offred and the other Handmaid’s at the Red Center. Lydia is a believer, she is, by all accounts in The Handmaid’s Tale, 100% committed to the Gilead and its principles. Here, she speaks broadly about freedom but is specifically referring to the freedom that these women no longer have as Handmaids. It’s a perfect example of Orwellian doublethink in which something that is inherently bad is described as being inherently good. She suggests that its a benefit for these women to be free “from” free choice. – Emma Baldwin BA in English, minor in Creative Writing, BFA in Fine Art, and BA in Art Histories. Literature is one of her greatest passions which she pursues on Book Analysis.
The Burdensome Luxury of History
Humanity has lived this. We’ve recorded it’s atrocious history. We’ve promised ourselves we would “never again” allow this. We’re watching the charlatans return to a level of faux-authority by proxy. That proxy is media attention. That proxy is social media virality. It’s a rouse. It’s a modern-day unstable individual standing on a street corner yelling absurdities. If they were yelling credible life advice or the 5-day forecast, you wouldn’t care. Absurdity causes alarm. It initiates pause. Usually, out of instinct to ensure the well-being of the propellant. Once it’s abundantly clear it’s root is instability, it is dismissed, but not forgotten. The extreme count on this basic instinct. Boring dies. Extremism lives on.
Join us This Sunday As The Sheeple Shepherd Podcast Breaks Down the Breakdown of Women’s Bodily Autonomy In The Name Of An Imaginary Friend
Join us Sunday May 8th @ 8pm EST as we dive into this dark, Orwellian horizon that threatens the comfortable, blind ignorance our generation currently enjoys. The rights other women have literally bled out on kitchen floors, in alleyways and dark secret corners of history, while fighting against being tossed aside in the name of another best-selling piece of fiction called “the bible.” Let’s talk about how “never again” still fucking matters, and how we can fight to ensure it really never happens again. For real this time, maybe?