One of the most unique programs that UC Berkeley has for its incoming and returning students is the “On The Same Page” reading program. All incoming students get a copy of the selected book, and all returning students, professors, and affiliated staff are encouraged to read it, too. This year, Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale made it from the shelves and the screen to the hands of Berkeley students. Even more exciting, though, is that Margaret Atwood herself is talking on campus today, August 23rd, about her work.
If you haven’t read The Handmaid’s Tale yet, you should stop reading this blog post and go get the book from the library. Immediately. 🙂
You’re probably thinking that Atwood’s dystopian universe could never happen. A new exhibit on the 3rd floor of Moffitt (pics below) reveals precisely how each of the aspects of the novel has its roots in the real world. Atwood drew from both her experiences and historical occurrences to imagine the universe of the novel. While you’re there, you can watch clips of the TV show based on the novel. Check it out while you’re checking out some of Atwood’s books!
Don’t let the genius of The Handmaid’s Tale overshadow the scope of Atwood’s many other achievements. She’s a Renaissance woman—her poetry, her novels, her critical analysis, and her nonfiction work are all worth a read.
by Taylor Follett