The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This is obviously a timely book.
Rather than being a dire warning of things to come, it has almost become a guidebook and a plan for the future, just like Idiocracy, but smarter and a lot more evil.
I originally read this back in the '80s and came back around to it for the horrible fact that reality is imitating fiction. Are we on the cusp of a total theocratic breakdown, a nightmare where it all crumbles because a handful of evil people impose their will upon everyone else?
I wish I was being hyperbolic. I wish I was being overblown. I wish I was standing on the side of the road with a sign that said, "The Time Is Nigh", but I'm not. It has happened and I'm full of rage.
Notes on the book, itself. I originally read it thinking that it was too slow and what I really wanted was the future historical footnotes at the end of the book. I was annoyed because it was all basically about dehumanization. I wanted more action.
I was a stupid kid. It takes time and experience to realize that the true horror, the true dystopia is the one that happens all around us. The dehumanization is here. It is now. It is in everything that makes us a little less. A little more depressed. Smaller, so as to be hurt less.
The only solution I can see, in the face of so much power and coercion, is to get angry and get smart.
Agreeing with the people who say, "Just wait, it'll get better," is the same as capitulation. It is the silence of good men (and women). It's not just happening to the people of Gilead. It's happening to all of us.
Don't let yourself get dehumanized. Not a single inch more. No More.
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