The Handmaid’s Tale is a novel by Margaret Atwood that has won numerous awards for its frightful dystopian imagery. It was recently adapted for series television, an adaptation that has led some to see beyond the confines of the printed word. Columnists for a number of newspapers and magazines have suggested the television series provides insights into contemporary politics and religion. This study examines the way these essayists wrestled with various interpretations of the show. Some writers based their fearful reaction to the show on the Trump administration. Others, though, scoffed at this interpretation and seemed to enjoy doing so. In this study I examine how these dissonant interpretations might raise very good questions about how scholars think about media, religion, and fear.
This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Media & Religion on October 2020, available online: https://doi.org/10.1080/15348423.2020.1853401
Moore, Rick Clifton. (2020). "My Enemy’s Fear is My Fun: Print Columnists’ Mixed Reactions to the Frights of Religious Dystopia". Journal of Media and Religion, 19(4), 145-164. https://doi.org/10.1080/15348423.2020.1853401