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The society in 'The Handmaid's Tale' is a throwback to the early Puritans whom I studied extensively at Harvard under Perry Miller, to whom the book is dedicated.
Good luck is the willing handmaid of a upright and energetic character, and conscientious observance of duty.
James Russell Lowell
You could tell 'The Handmaid's Tale' from a male point of view. People have mistakenly felt that the women are oppressed, but power tends to organise itself in a pyramid. I could pick a male narrator from somewhere in that pyramid. It would interesting.
I was not really aware of the dystopian genre before I read 'The Handmaid's Tale.' Many poets as well, like John Donne and Emily Dickinson, would be the influences; I specialized in Emily Dickinson at university. Both of those poets have really interesting ways of looking at life and death.
I knew from reading about Sarah Grimke that she'd been given a handmaid to be her personal slave and that her name was Hetty. The only other fact I knew about her was that Sarah taught her to read: They conspired in a very subversive way, by locking the door and screening the keyhole.
Sue Monk Kidd
For Mythology is the handmaid of literature; and literature is one of the best allies of virtue and promoters of happiness.
My English teachers gave me a copy of Atwood's 'The Handmaid's Tale' when I left high school, which has always been very special to me - it was the novel that introduced me to dystopian fiction. I'm also influenced by Edgar Allan Poe, Dickens, John Wyndham and Middle English dream-visions.
I like science fiction. Arthur C. Clarke, Philip K. Dick and Vonnegut, and I really like Margaret Atwood, 'The Handmaid's Tale.' And you know, so much of science fiction has to do with predicting what's to come, so I think that's really interesting.
Music had always been the handmaid of the Roman liturgy.
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