birth control, abortion, AIDS and syphilis epidemics as well as experiments with gene splicing.
The President Day Massacre
The Sons of Jacob and others orchestrate the murder of the President and of Congress, blaiming Islamic terrorists. The Constitution is suspended. The Sons of Jacob take over government power and form the Republic of Gilead.
increasing xenophobia and racism in the US, return to traditional Puritan values
nuclear plant accidents, chemical and biological warfare, insecticides and herbicides contribute to falling birthrates.
the conversion period
the Early Gilead Era
All second marriages and non-marital liaisons are forbidden. Homosexuality is declared illegal.
Women loose the right to hold jobs, own property, and access money. Abortion and birth control are outlawed.
Borders are closed
To prevent people from fleeing the Gilead regime, especially women who are confirmed to be fertile.
A resistance movement is formed by the name of May Day. It smuggles people out of Gilead via the Underground Femaleroad.
the Early Gilead Era
Rachel and Leah Centres
Fertile women are rounded up and placed in centres for indoctrination. They are trained by Aunts to become Handmaids to the Commanders of Gilead and their Wives.
Severe punishments and public hangings and beatings are used as a means to prevent dissent.
Those who rebel against Gilead are sent to workcamps called "The Colonies". Here they work to restore the polluted land by removing hazardous, toxic waste.
Many of the original architects of Gilead are corrupt and immoral. They act against Gilead protocol and believe themselves to be above the law
the Middle Gilead Era
The Great Purge(s)
People among the governing Gilead Elite are killed by the regime for the greater good of the Republic; to weed out morally corrupt or seditious elements.
The 'Repatriation' Scheme
Jews are re-patriated to unknown locations, but many do not survive the journey as they are thrown overboard while at sea to minimize expense and maximize profits.
the Fall of Gilead
Professor Pieixoto's Lecture
symposium held in 2195, in a university in the Arctic. Gilead is long gone, and Offred’s story has been published as a manuscript titled The Handmaid’s Tale. Her story was found recorded on a set of cassette tapes locked in an army foot locker in Bangor, Maine. The main part of the epilogue is a speech by an expert on Gilead named Professor Pieixoto.