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You might look at the suppression of women in each story and how each protagonist copes with the situation she finds herself in because of her society's treatment of women. Tess is a tainted woman because she was raped. Offred is subjected to the role of a handmaid. Nevertheless, each finds a way to survive and each finds love--Tess eventually with Angel, and Offred with Nick. In each case, love has obstacles including betrayal and issues with trust. I hope this gives you something to think about. Good luck with your essay.
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