22 thoughts on “Class Discussion #9: People’s Choice Posts for ‘The Handmaid’s Tale,’ Parts III-VIII

  1. Kina

    I agree with this

    “In part three to part eight of the book, the limitations were expressed everywhere, especially for the women which seemed to be restricted on sexual expressions, whether they are feminists or the religious conservatives. The sexuality seemed to be extremely limited, especially the women’s sexuality. Women living in the country of Gilead lost most of their freedoms and unable to do what you really want to, not only on activity, but also on the thoughts.” 

    I agree with this because it does seems like the women are limited into expressing themselves and their feeling. Each one of them are to keep them selves void of feelings in front of each other.


  2. sharielibreros

    “Basically the women in Gilead were used as a tool for the purpose of reproductions, they seemed to have no life but just used for other benefits of the society. Sexual love and romantic love will never exist among them. The government in Gilead were controlling the women’s bodies for the next generation reproduction which the narrator greatly complained about.” – Terry L.


    I couldn’t agree more after reading this part of the blog. As mentioned before, and even in class, these women are simply vessels; items in the eyes of society with no other use than to reproduce. The Handmaids are treated to no respect  despite the important job they hold. As Offered mentioned, she was treated like furniture and a chore by the other women. They are no longer seen as human beings by others and even lesser by their fellow women. 



  3. Gemanna

    Anoop’s blog post on parts III-VIII of The Handmaid’s Tale provides insight on one of the most disturbing yet significant scenes of Margaret Atwood’s novel. When Janine “testifies” on her painful gang rape experience prior to her life as a Handmaid, the Aunts insist that it was entirely her fault; the result of being a free woman. This psychological torment is fueled by the anxiety of the consequences that would follow if they didn’t conform. Anoop makes a great point when he includes how “skewed” perceptions become, as Janine herself admits to having deserved such a traumatic and horrific experience.
     “The situation with Janine also shows how skewed everyones perceptions are at the center. Janine may have quite possibly been the victim, but the Aunts made sure she blamed it on herself, as did everyone else. The handmaids chanted “Her fault, her fault, her fault.” (72) They seem to do much chanting of ideas or beliefs that must be burned into their minds. Janine eventually says, “it was my own fault, I led them on. I deserved the pain.” (72) I believe many conflicts are solved like this at the center”, (Par 2).
    Anoop also brings up Offred’s uncontrollable habit of “time-traveling” through the timeline of her life and almost reliving her memories. Her free life is still fresh in her mind, and it taunts her with flashes of her daughter and her husband. I think of Offred’s memories pre-Gilead era as a collection in her mind that she just flips through like channels on a television until she chooses a good one to think about.
     “I find the small flashbacks or memories Offred has to be interesting. Small items, such as remember that a desk had an armwrest for students to write on, the accidental showing of signs with text on the TV, and face lotion all had small connections to her past”, (Par 3)
    Anoops Blog:





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    1. Jill Belli Post author

      Gem, you again have some weird text at the bottom of your comment. Can you delete that (and going forward, make sure it’s not there before you post)? Thanks!

  4. Daniel

    I enjoyed Gemanna’s post the most:

    1) I liked the way the post was divided up, making it more readable.

    2) I was touched by the paragraph on hope; the resilience and tenacity shown by Offred in her unwillingness to give up. I believe that we will need to develop the significance of the color red: “Red Color Psychology and Meaning. Associated with energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion, desire, and love. Enhances human metabolism, increases respiration rate, and raises blood pressure. It attracts attention more than any other color, at times signifying danger”. (http://www.colorpsychology.org/red/).

    3) I see slut-shaming as a nasty yet effective form of manipulation…..not being a woman, that’s easy for me to say!, but I still see it as manipulation of others….an easy button to press!


    4) I think that “The Ceremony” was intended to shock…despite being so ceremonious and because it was so banal. It really is rape when I think about it, and the fact Offred cooperated, when in her heart of hearts it was not something that she would ever have contemplated in her previous life. It was something that she had to do, if she was ever to see her daughter again….now that is sad!

  5. Jordan JP

    I vote for Gemanna’s post, Butter is Hope. She has my vote for three main reasons, the first one being the fact that she categorized her post making it easier on the reader, the second and my favorite is her attention to details, which would be ignored by most readers, and lastly her interaction with the novel seems to be personal, which makes her post one of the most interesting one’s as far as I’m concerned. 

  6. Samuel

    I voted for Daniel’s post Thinking Can Hurt Your Chances, and I Intent to Last

    1) It interesting theme that Offred increase her control over here consciousness to maintain her sanity in her situation.

    2) It interesting to mention that the past is double-edge-word that it would bring joy and pain.

    3) Importance of self-control for Offred, so her emotions and thought is in check, this very important in maintain one sanity.



  7. Heder Pastuizaca

    I agree with Terry’s post about how the unequal treatment occurred in Gilead, and its scary how the society has twisted the minds of these women, so much that they bring each other down when something bad happens to one of them.

    As I’m reading this book it makes me appreciate free will and the privileges we have in this point in time. because pre-Gilead the world was similar that of which we live in and its a wonderful place and time to live in.


  8. Hamiltonc92

    I vote for Butter is Hope by Gemana  because it was very well organised and was written with a very intimate feeling in each paragraph. Very good idea of using the definition of slut shaming to prove point on the backwards traditions and rituals in the story.

  9. blanca borquez

    I chose Gem’s post “Butter is Hope” because of how she went so deep into it that it took me along with her.  Her attention to detail, like we talked about Offred having to have such great attention to detail, as well as her format in the sense that she separated her points and ideas. She goes more into detail and even included a picture under “The Ceremony” showing us how awkward and uncomfortable that scene must have been, not just for Serena Joy and Offred, but also for The Commander. Even though I think he somewhat enjoyed it. .

    Butter is Hope

  10. Cristian

    This week I enjoyed Gemanna’s post “butter is hope” because of the way her post flowed and was broken down into parts that made sense. I like that she made me think and go back to reading about the part where Offred hid some butter for later in order to keep her skin smooth in order to have hope one day they will be freed. I had previously not analyzed this part with the detail she did, in everything else that is going on in the novel it is important small details like this that can be skipped over if one is not looking for them. The novel is so rich with detail and information it can be easy for us to miss details so I appreciate her for picking up this one.  I also enjoyed how Gemanna was able to pick up that there is still hope in all this going on, because there is little hope to be felt while reading so far.



  11. Stevens Jean

    Picking Danial’s post. The part i agreed with has to be the very last paragraph. A person’s past can be considered double edged sword. It’s comprised of both fond and nostalgic memories and painful tragedies. In Offred’s case. Her very past not only impedes her willingness to assimilate herself to the society that she now has to live in but, it’s also filled with nostalgic memories with her husband and daughter that she can’t bear to let go.


  12. Sebastian Garzon

    I decided Gemanna’s blog this week.  I agree with her feelings about Offred’s hope and the rape. Offred’s hope is touching when she believes that her family may still be alive. This seems to be helping her to move forward each day or to give her strength when she needs it. Also the rape is really terrible. The group of people slut shame a person being raped.

    Butter is Hope

  13. Terry_L

    I would like to vote for Anoop’s blog post, the idea of women being treated unequally and restricted on many aspects in life such as read and write was stated in the post which I also agree on. In the book, Offred kept going back to the memories when she had a chance of free writing and reading without any limitations. As it said in the post “The handmaids in the book were always treated as the tools,” but not like anyone else. Offred also complained that women in Gilead were without freedom, not even in actual life, but also in mental. https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/belli-f2017-eng2001/restrictions/

  14. Imani

    The post I’m choosing for people choice is Kinat. I agreed with a lot of the points she touched on such as the fact that male domination is ac curing and they the law is stealing the right and freedom from women, they can’t even read the bible.The men in this time is stripping away the knowledge and freedom of women and telling interpreting their own beliefs to them.


  15. Adrian

    I laughed when I read “Butter is Hope” by Gemana. She poured her thoughts to the blog and even gave a visual image of the ritual. (It may sound immature but, the discussion we had in class about the ceremony was funny.) I like the quote “Treated exactly like “containers”, the value they held only existed inside them; specifically in their wombs” (Gemana). The handmaids of Gilead are being mistreated and Gemana brings up the point that slut-shaming  is a thing in the story


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