Thesis Statement Conformity
By drawing from three distinct cultural and literary traditions with which the reader is probably familiar, Atwood effectively prepares the reader for entrance into a world that is wholly unfamiliar.
The epigraphs serve not only as orienting and grounding references, but as guideposts to which the reader can return in order to discern and derive meaning in the text.
Thesis Statement / Essay Topic #2 The Importance of Names in The Handmaid’s Tale Much that confronts the reader in Atwood’s science fiction tale of a dystopic future is likely to be unfamiliar.
The reader has entered into a time and place where normal institutions, relationships, and social structures have been rendered strange and unrecognizable.
Aside from the thesis statements above, these quotes from The Handmaid’s Tale alone can act as essay questions or study questions as they are all relevant to the text in an important way. Look at the bottom of the page to identify which edition of the text they are referring to.“There was old sex in the room, and loneliness, and expectation, of something without a shape or name." (3)“We yearned for the future. June." (4)“Sunlight comes in through the window too, and falls on the floor, which is made of wood, in narrow strips, highly polished. I know why there is no glass…and why the window opens only partly and why the glass in it is shatterproof. Where I am is not a prison but a privilege…." (6)“She’s in her usual Martha dress, which is dull green, like a surgeon’s gown of the time before. but…without the white wings and the veil." (7)“I used to think of my body as an instrument, of pleasure…." (22)“Give me children, or else I die.
Conformity is a quality that is present in the hierarchy of American society....
[tags: Individualism, Conformity, Human Psyche] - Follow the Leader Asch (1955) conducted a study, Opinions and Social Pressure, to better understand the issue of “perceptual conformity” and determine how powerful conformity is in influencing the perceptions, beliefs, opinions, and actions of individual members within a group as well as determine whether or not a change in the opinion of some group members results in participants being less likely to conform to others’ beliefs and perceptions.
The first is a quotation from the Bible’s Book of Genesis, in which the story of the failure of a woman to bear children is mentioned.
The second epigraph is from an essay by Jonathan Swift that tackles the issue of poor families raising multiple children. Together, these three epigraphs establish the tone and allude the thematic direction of the novel.