The Handmaid's Tale

The Role of Kindness: The Life of a Handmaid 11th Grade

Kindness, when given out, is habitually expected to be returned. More often than not it is seen that kindness, in fact, is given so that something else of value may be returned. Kindness is often exchanged for similar invaluable things like favouritism and prosperity, making the giver of such manners manipulative. When one contains the hidden motive to receive something in return for expected kindness, one has the ability to control not only the relationships around them, but their own singular destiny as well. For example, the character Offred of The Handmaid's Tale treats her masters Serena Joy and The Commander, as well as her only friend Ofglen, with kindness merely to achieve a sure confirmation of her own well-being. In Margaret Atwood's novel The Handmaid's Tale, Offred uses kindness to mask her inner thoughts and feelings in order to ensure her survival and her believed destiny as a handmaid.

Though Offred's gentleness and quite nature are expected in her ranking as a Handmaid, Offred's treatment towards Serena Joy differs from her attitude. Having known Serena Joy previously to be an enthusiastic pioneer of the new Gilead regime, Offred works dutifully to live up to her mater's expectations. Understanding that " it...

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