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Discussion Questions > The Handmaid's Tale Online Discussion

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message 1: by Betty Joan (new)

Betty Joan (thebejo) | 25 comments Mod
Since we aren't meeting in person, please discuss your thoughts on the book here!


message 2: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte | 16 comments I found it scary... Because, it could happen. I found it depressing, but it was also hopeful because there were still people in the world making a positive difference.


message 3: by Betty Joan (new)

Betty Joan (thebejo) | 25 comments Mod
Completely agree- it's so realistic. The government could easily & quickly cut us off- how much of our information, finances etc are online? How much of our lives are stored and categorized by the government for medical, legal, insurance, and financial purposes?

I found some what I felt are plot holes- what do y'all think? Like, where would hand maids come from? At that point all children are assigned to important people- they would marry these children off; they wouldn't turn into handmaids- no way. So after Offred's generation where would they come from?


message 4: by Lauren (new)

Lauren (elle_emm_dee) | 12 comments Betty, that is a good question. I wish there had been more involvement of the Econowives and their lives. With the plot hole of "where do the succession of Handmaid's come from" perhaps one can infer that the daughters from the Econowives will be selected as future Handmaids. That could explain why the Econowives held such hatred towards the Handmaids when the two categories of women passed each other in the street. The Econowives looked on with disdain at the future their daughters would unwillingly become a part of. I came to this conclusion because the daughters of the Commanders/Handmaids/Wife's will go on to become wife's themselves. They will marry the sons born of the "trio" who will then become embedded in Gilead. If the Handmaids are responsible for providing high-class children, I believe the Econowives are charged with the other "womanly duty" of suppling daughters to be trained as Handmaids. Trade low ranking girls to become low ranking women.


message 5: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte | 16 comments Have any of the children grown up enough to become adults, since this happened?

What is even happening with the kids, like for example, the ones stolen from the women who became handmaids?


message 6: by Betty Joan (new)

Betty Joan (thebejo) | 25 comments Mod
Char- these kids were assigned to commanders & their wives. These kids are grown up now, and married to angels or whatever the military was- remember Offred goes to a ceremony? But after those displaced kids ALL grow up where would handmaids come from? Inferility is rampant so kids are precious


message 7: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte | 16 comments But, would they need handmaids? Are all the kids infertile?


message 8: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte | 16 comments Offred's own daughter is only a few years older than she was when she was captured, right? She's around 8? Not old enough to be married or become a handmaid. I am trying to piece together the timeline and figure out when the first kids were stolen and handmaids came into being.


message 9: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte | 16 comments In other news...
I just finished Rubyfruit Jungle...
Nida, how do you feel about the ending???

Grrrrrrrrrrr....


message 10: by Betty Joan (new)

Betty Joan (thebejo) | 25 comments Mod
Yes, I think Offred has been "in the system" for at least 5 years, so that would put the daughter at around 13 or so at the most minimum- because in the book there's several veiled references to Offred about running out of time, out of chances to have a child- so that made me think she's around 35, 36 since that's the age we typically think women should have children by then. I think the whole thing happened when she was in her 20's?


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