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Margaret Atwood's "The Handmaid's Tale" Airs/Canadians-Why Do Women Treat Other Women "That" Way? Options
Posted: Thursday, April 20, 2017 9:45:08 AM

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Joined: 3/23/2015
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Location: Burlington, Ontario, Canada

It is an eagerly anticipated ten-episode series.

Unfortunately, it looks as if only Canadians can see it now but it will air in other countries when this exclusive airing is done.

It is an all-star cast including Elisabeth Moss and Joseph Fiennes. Atwood's book has recently topped the best-seller list again with the release of various anti-female forces from their hiding places.

I have it set to record the series and will let you know how well it is done.

"Based on the award-winning, best-selling novel by Margaret Atwood, which recently topped the best-seller’s list once again, The Handmaid’s Tale is the story of life in the dystopia of Gilead, a totalitarian society in what was formerly part of the United States. Facing environmental disasters and a plunging birthrate, Gilead is ruled by a twisted fundamentalist regime that treats women as property of the state. As one of the few remaining fertile women, Offred (Elisabeth Moss) is a Handmaid in the Commander’s household, one of the caste of women forced into sexual servitude as a last desperate attempt to repopulate a devastated world. In this terrifying society where one wrong word could end her life, Offred navigates between Commanders, their cruel Wives, domestic Marthas, and her fellow Handmaids – where anyone could be a spy for Gilead – with one goal: to survive and find the daughter that was taken from her."

A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it. Albert Einstein
Posted: Thursday, April 20, 2017 9:59:21 AM

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Joined: 3/23/2015
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Location: Burlington, Ontario, Canada

Here's the best explanation I've ever seen as to why women treat other women the way they do sometimes. I'm sure I will be upset by these scenes, but I intend to watch this series.

"The Handmaids sit in a circle, with the Taser-equipped Aunts forcing them to join in what is now called (but was not, in 1984) the “slut-shaming” of one of their number, Jeanine, who is being made to recount how she was gang-raped as a teenager. Her fault, she led them on — that is the chant of the other Handmaids.
Although it was “only a television show” and these were actresses who would be giggling at coffee break, and I myself was “just pretending,” I found this scene horribly upsetting. It was way too much like way too much history. Yes, women will gang up on other women. Yes, they will accuse others to keep themselves off the hook: We see that very publicly in the age of social media, which enables group swarmings. Yes, they will gladly take positions of power over other women, even — and, possibly, especially — in systems in which women as a whole have scant power: All power is relative, and in tough times any amount is seen as better than none. Some of the controlling Aunts are true believers, and think they are doing the Handmaids a favor: At least they haven’t been sent to clean up toxic waste, and at least in this brave new world they won’t get raped, not as such, not by strangers. Some of the Aunts are sadists. Some are opportunists. And they are adept at taking some of the stated aims of 1984 feminism — like the anti-porn campaign and greater safety from sexual assault — and turning them to their own advantage. As I say: real life.

Any other reasons why women behave the way they do when in power over other women?

A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it. Albert Einstein
Posted: Thursday, April 20, 2017 10:52:16 AM
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Joined: 6/14/2009
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Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom

Hope -

I am so glad you have finally put the record straight concerning Atwood.

Everything inside my Dram/Lit. mind rose up and exploded when I read Parsar's recent thread title about Atwood 'making a fool of' herself.

The irony of a person who regularly informs us that he is 'not very intelligent', 'doesn't read', is 'not well-educated' and who bases his information about the world from Fox and Brietbart; saying Atwood made a fool of herself, is however, very rich and, in the end, just gave me the giggles.

Atwood herself - whether one agrees or disagrees with all she says - is highly educated, fiendishly clever, and keeps up with her peers through voracious reading. She is a Literary Giant not just in Canada, but around the world and is quoted and referred to wherever intelligent discourse abounds.

Yet, in order not to upset Parsar and bring his wrath down upon us once more, we all kept mum about this lest we be accused of 'bullying' or 'terrifying' him and his 'many more people than you can imagine.'

Thanks for being a grown-up, Hope.
Andrew Schultz
Posted: Friday, April 21, 2017 8:25:21 AM

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Location: Chicago, Illinois, United States
Well, I think it is not necessarily restricted to women. The Stanford Prison Experiment is probably the big example of how people with a bit of authority can let it go to their heads.

But I think in general people can be tempted to act on their jealousy of other people's successes, including friends'. We all have our moments, but in the right environment, they are just that. A society that perpetuates jealousy (overdoing "competition is good") is horrible in many ways. And I think a lot of advertising, whether it deliberately MEANS to, gives the message that you SHOULD be doing better and you should be able to show it off.

I don't think I can fully identify with the characters of The Handmaid's Tale, and I think it would be wrong to say I did, because--well, I'm male. But I've read other banned books like The Chocolate War that discuss this sort of thing.

I particularly enjoy the idiom section of this fine website.
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