‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ cast seems a little confused about feminism


The Handmaid’s Tale presents the story of a near-future patriarchal dystopia, where women are forbidden from reading or using money and are categorized by their supposed virtue and utility as child-bearers. But according to the cast of Hulu’s new adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s 1985 novel, it’s “not a feminist story.”

A panel at the Tribeca Film Festival went in an unexpected direction on Friday night when the cast of the show emphasized that their project was a “human story” rather than a feminist one. Plus, in the Trump era, they said the TV show was about the writing, not politics.

“For me, it’s not a feminist story. It is a human story because women’s rights are human rights,” star Elisabeth Moss, of Mad Men, said. “I never approach anything with any sort of political agenda. I approach it from a very human place.”

Co-star Joseph Fiennes added, “For me, it was the writing, not politics.”

The comments confused a lot of people why would being feminist and human, or politically and artistically resonant, be mutually exclusive?

It’s worse when you consider the marketing of the show so far has aimed at people who probably identify as feminists. For example, women dressed as handmaids the women in red cloaks who on the show are used by the state solely for their fertility had appeared the week before in Washington, D.C. where they formed a striking image in front of national monuments.

Hulu’s TV adaptation was well underway before Donald Trump was elected president, but the novel has seen a resurgence in popularity since November. Even if the show’s creators want their project to be seen by viewers across the political spectrum, denying its feminist roots doesn’t seem like the best way.

The Handmaid’s Tale premieres on Hulu April 26.

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Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/04/22/handmaids-tale-feminism-tribeca/

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Adapted from the classic novel by Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale is the story of life in the dystopia of Gilead, a totalitarian society in what was formerly the United States. Facing environmental disasters and a plunging birthrate, Gilead is ruled by a twisted fundamentalism in its militarized ‘return to traditional values'. As one of the few remaining fertile women, Offred (Elisabeth Moss) is a Handmaid in the Commander’s household, one of the caste of women forced into sexual servitude as a last desperate attempt to repopulate the world. In this terrifying society, Offred must navigate between Commanders, their cruel Wives, domestic Marthas, and her fellow Handmaids – where anyone could be a spy for Gilead – all with one goal: to survive and find the daughter that was taken from her.