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This article has been published in: Ocula 22, Be cool. How a Cultural Icon is Born

author: Antonella Mascio (Dipartimento di Scienze Politiche e Sociali, Università di Bologna (IT))

Between Fiction and Reality. The Handmaid’s Tale Uniform as a Cultural Icon

language: italian

publication date: April 2020

abstract: In the current media scene, the TV series are a flagship product. They tell exciting stories, following a cinematic logic (Mittell 2015) and attract an ever wider audience. In some cases a not well defined temporality is called into question, a sort of near future, often accompanied by a dystopic view of events within that interpretative/definitive framework defined as «speculative fiction» (Thomas 2013) and which sometimes leads to a reading of the real. The Handmaid’s Tale (Hulu 2017-) falls perfectly in this climate: it explores the themes of the submission of women and the ways used by a political regime to enslave the female body and its reproductive functions.
Through a study based on online discussions and articles published by the media, the uses that certain groups of audiences have made of this TV series emerge, starting from its broadcast in the spring of 2017. The red uniforms used in the series are quickly became the cultural symbol of a female resistance scattered throughout the world.

keywords: icona culturale, cultural icon, the handmaid’s tale, serie tv, audience, uso politico, tv series, political use

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DOI: 10.12977/ocula2020-18

citation information: Antonella Mascio, Fra fiction e realtà. L’uniforme di The Handmaid’s Tale come icona culturale, "Ocula", vol.21, n.22, pp.239-265, April 2020. DOI: 10.12977/ocula2020-18



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