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Margaret Atwood claims climate crisis and rights of women are 'very connected'

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Author Margaret Atwood brands people who ignore the climate crisis ‘sexist’ – and claims women’s rights and environmental issues are ‘very connected’

  • Margaret Atwood, 80, says women’s rights and climate change ‘very connected’ 
  • Claims those who want to suppress women also often deny the climate crisis
  • Credits climate activists such as Greta Thunberg with spearheading movement 

By Monica Greep For Mailonline

Published: | Updated:

Author Margaret Atwood has claimed that women’s rights and the climate crisis are ‘very connected’.  

The Handmaid’s Tale writer, 80, from Ottawa, Canada, insisted that action around climate change is ‘very important’ and credited Greta Thunberg with leading momentum around this subject. 

The novelist, who is also a keen environmental activist, said that those who ‘want to suppress women’ are the same people who often ‘want to pretend there is no climate crisis’.

Speaking to France24, the author insisted that if you deny climate change then you are in turn suppressing ‘very strong voices’ within that movement. 

The Handmaid’s Tale author Margaret Atwood (pictured) has claimed that women’s rights and the climate crisis are ‘very connected’

The novelist, 80, from Ottawa, Canada that those who ‘want to suppress women’ are the same people who often ‘want to pretend there is no climate crisis’ 

‘There is a vigorous new generation and the climate change movement, I think, is very important,’ she said.

‘That and the rights of women are very connected. So the people who want to suppress women, also want to pretend there is no climate crisis. 

‘So if you suppress women, you suppress also some very strong voices about the climate crisis.’  

This isn’t the first time the writer has linked climate change to the rights of women; in 2018 she predicted women will be worst affected by climate change, reported the Guardian

The writer credited activists, such as Greta Thunberg, with leading action around the subject of climate change. Greta is pictured speaking at a Future climate protest in Hamburg, Germany 

‘Women will be directly and adversely affected by climate change’, said the author. 

She claimed that extreme weather events such as droughts, floods and rising sea levels will all result in less food, meaning supplies will be unevenly distributed to women and children.  

‘[Climate change] will also mean social unrest, which can lead to wars and civil wars and then brutal repressions and totalitarianisms,’ she added. ‘Women do badly in wars — worse than in peacetime.’ 

Margaret’s dystopian novel The Handmaids Tale became an instant feminist classic upon its release in 1985. 

Margaret’s dystopian novel The Handmaids Tale became an instant feminist classic upon its release in 1985 and has since been turned into a popular TV series. Elisabeth Moss is pictured as handmaid Offred in the adaptation

Last year the author released a sequel to her iconic novel, which managed to scoop the Man Booker Prize two months before it was even released. 

The book is set 15 years after The Handmaid’s Tale, which described a dystopian society in the near future in which fertile women, known as handmaids, are forced to provide children for the rich and influential.

The original novel has been made into a popular TV series, which was met with critical acclaim when it debuted in 2017, winning five Primetime Emmy Awards for its first season. 

Mad Men actress Elisabeth Moss plays handmaid Offred, the main character in the series, alongside Joseph Fiennes, Yvonne Strahovski, Alexis Bledel and Ann Dowd.

The third season aired over the summer and Hulu has picked up the show, which dropped slightly in ratings and acclaim for a fourth.

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