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The Handmaid’s Tale: 10 important themes tackled by the award-winning TV series



The red capes. The wall. The rebellion. These are the images conjured up when fans of Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale think of the popular TV series. Here are the 10 themes addressed by The Handmaid’s Tale.

The Handmaid’s Tale tackles a multitude of themes, explored through narrative storytelling. While the show has had its fair share of reviews, particularly for its blatant depictions of the horrors of Gilead, viewers are hooked on the saga, which is now in its fifth season. Let’s see the 10 most important topics covered.

    The Handmaid's Tale The Handmaid’s Tale –

Social engineering

One of the most remarkable aspects of Gilead is how the country was founded and how it is run. A religious sect in America has grown wary of the future, with declining birth rates, environmental pollution causing health problems, and an aversion to traditional gender roles. The social engineering of The Handmaid’s Tale argues that there is no such thing as a perfect society.

Oppression and rebellion

The oppression of women is the basis of Gilead society to ensure that birth rates increase and that women fulfill the traditional roles of domestic chores, under the guidance of men in high positions. With commanders, guardians, angels, and all other men making laws and regulations over women, patriarchal theocracy cements all gaps in their power that allow women to enter into rebellion.


The series’ religious themes can be misinterpreted as an atheistic perspective that seeks to persuade viewers that religion is the root of all evil; however, the actual undercurrents of religious intrigue in The Handmaid’s Tale actually allude to the manipulation of power for those of high status.


Fertility is both a hindrance and a blessing in Gilead, where fertile women are forced to have children regardless of their wishes, but if they do not conceive they risk death in the colonies.

Environmental consequences

Gilead is actively fighting climate change, including managing agricultural systems through organic and sustainable methods and reducing fossil fuel emissions.


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