300px-FemaleSign2.pngIn A Handmaiden’s Tale characters are addressed according to their position and function in society. In the society names are not used in order to dehumanize each other. The roles of each gender are kept strictly separate. The roles in society are visually obvious, because the color of their attire is specific to their role. Women are divided into seven distinct categories of “legitimate” women.

“Wives” are at the highest social rank of a woman. Wives wear blue dresses. “Daughters” are adopted or naturally born children on a Commander and a Wife. “Daughters” wear white dresses until marriage. “Handmaidens” are fertile and their function is to bear children for Wives. Their attire is completely red except for two white wings that prevent them from seeing and prevent their face from being seen expect from directly ahead. “Aunts” are supposed to monitor the Handmaidens and instill the idea that being a Handmaiden is honorable. “Marthas” wear green, they are infertile, and perform domestic skills. “Econwives” are women who have married low ranking men and are expected to perform all female functions. The dresses of the econwives are multicolored red, green, and blue to represent the multiple roles they serve in society.