While Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale was originally published in 1985, the novel has experienced an unprecedented level of interest since Trump’s inauguration, partly due to the buzz surrounding the new show on Hulu and its marketing. By Feb. 2017, The Handmaid’s Tale had reached the top spot on Amazon’s Best Seller List and as you may have read, is backed up in many of the country’s library book reservation queues.
Since Trump’s inauguration in January, his administration has taken immediate actions to revoke basic women’s rights. And of course as we already know, in The Handmaid’s Tale the United States of America have been taken over by a militant group who force fertile women to become handmaidens tasked with repopulating the nation.
As if this weren’t already an uncomfortable case of life imitating art, installation artists Abott Miller and Paula Scher have taken it a step further with their new public art installation on the High Line in New York City which was inspired by The Handmaid’s Tale. And if you live in New York City, you’ll be able to go see it in person.
But there’s more: the public art piece contains 4,000 free copies of Atwood’s novel. Better yet should you remove a book from Miller and Scher’s interactive art installation, you’ll reveal messages of women’s empowerment and anti-authoritarian resistance, an example of which is a quote from the book, ”Nolite te bastardes carborundorum,” which famously translates to ”Don’t let the bastards grind you down” and has quickly become a catchphrase lately.
The installation itself is a head turner and utilizes brightly illuminated images from the television adaptation, which began to stream on Hulu on the 16th of April. If you live in NYC and are interested in viewing the Handmaid’s Tale public art installation (and maybe picking up a book in the process), it will be open till the 30th of April and can be easily accessed near the High Line’s 16th Street entrance.