The Handmaids Tale
Margaret Atwood
Contributed by Marshall Raine
Chapter 25

It is morning, and Offred is woken up by screams, and a loud crash. Offred had fallen asleep in the closet and had startled Cora so much that she dropped the breakfast tray. In an attempt to cover up the situation, Offred begs Cora not to say anything alluding that strange behavior like that may be an indicator of a pregnancy, something that excites Cora a great deal. Cora even runs the risk of being found to be dishonest about how the tray fell, but her excitement about a possible pregnancy seems to be all that’s important. Later on, we are informed that Offred continues to meet the Commander during late nights in the study room. They maintain a unique communication style using signals, often relayed by Nick which Serena cannot decode. The Commander does not force himself onto Offred, but instead, it reaches a point where he allows her to read through a copy of Vogue magazine, something that excites Offred, due to its illegality but also how it is the antithesis of the modest clothes they wear every day. Offred even goes so far as to ask for body lotion, informing the Commander about the butter she had bene using, something that amuses the Commander greatly.


In the article, the commander seems to have developed a degree of attraction and affection towards Offred, and this is the reason she keeps meeting with him frequently in his study room. From the text we can see that the Commander greatly enjoys Offred’s company. In the chapter, the Commander is perceived as being kind, despite trying as much as possible to stick to the confines of the law in the household. Ironically, he is likable contrary to the notion of cruelty which most commanders possessed. For instance, he appears shy, and tries to behave in a manner that does not intimidate Offred. Primarily, the chapter aims to portray the human aspect of the commanders, and how they are also in need of affection. He wants Offred to like him, changing his behavior, appearing to be shy and striving to be unintimidating. This affection comes to a head with the Commander trying to kiss Offred and being disappointed in the passionless one he receives in return.

Have study documents to share about The Handmaids Tale? Upload them to earn free Studypool credits!