The Handmaids Tale
Margaret Atwood
Contributed by Marshall Raine
Chapter 24

Offred returns to her room and does not feel the same in her new clothes claiming that she cannot even think without her clothes on. She is mesmerized with the potential that surrounds her new apparent relationship with the Commander. After debating with herself, she comes to the realization that she is in a position to ask for things from the Commander. Recalling how Aunt Lydia described men as ‘sex machines’ that women need to learn how to control. As she gets comfortable, she recalls a documentary from her youth. The documentary was about the horrors of World War II and featured an interview with the mistress of a Nazi concentration camp survivor – thinking about how much suffering there is in the world. Everything starts to get too much for Offred and she breaks down in hysterical laughter, something that she immediately tries to hide.


The chapter clearly shows Offred struggling with her new situation comprehending new things, and thinking about herself, and what she is going through. Women are forced to approach any new scenario without any advice or experience, simply left alone with their thoughts in their rooms for vast periods of time. They are also forced to handle traumatic situations in their rooms, without any comfort or. All in all, women in these critical conditions should always have company to avoid extreme dangers they are exposed to. The author aims to show how the women embrace these critical conditions.

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