The theocratic totalitarian regime operating in Gilead was instigated and is controlled by men, the male protagonists in the novel are seen as caring and sympathetic. Although one or two women have become quite close through their ordeal, despite the fact that they have had no other choice, "We"re used to each other."(Pg-9); the mass majority of women get on uneasily, due to the rituals and social hierarchies that have been prearranged by male rulers, "The Econowives do not like us"(Pg-18). Gilead I find is far removed from the world today. Women have overcome numerous obstacles to be recognized for their intelligence and skills. Women, I have also found, are very competitive with one another, because they have to fight their way up corporate ladders and prove their intelligence everyday. In today's world women in many ways have adjusted their attitude on sexual roles and fought to obtain equality.
Everything within Gilead in predetermined by sex. Although there are high-ranking women in Gilead, their titles are nonetheless determined by their gender. Aunt and Wives are how they are referred to, whereas the male Commanders, Angels, Eyes, and Guardians do not reduce individual men to their sex. Therefore, regardless of rank, a woman's central feature is her gender. Even a Wife, the highest-ranking women in Gilead, is defined in relation to a man. In today's world, a woman is not recognized dependant upon the man she is with. Throughout the past two decades women have fought to obtain equal status to mean and to prove that they are not the weaker gender, "Women's sexual attitudes and behaviors have changed drastically within the past 20 years. Much of this change can be attributed to women taking jobs outside the home and acquiring a heightened sense of personal identity."(Janis, Samuel PhD& Janis, Cynthia. M.D "Women and their changing role in society" Women's Life. Pg-27). I feel that years ago the gender you happened to be when you were born would determine how successful you would be at a later age.