It is significant that Offred remembers the time before the creation of Gilead—time she spent with her husband and daughter—for a few reasons. First, she is able to compare her past life to her new life, showing us just how much things have changed in the years that Gilead has existed. Second, Offred is able to talk about how such a regime was able to come into power. She describes how, in slowly warming water, one would be boiled to death before one becomes aware of the heat. The changes that led to the creation of Gilead came slowly at first, so slowly that no one really seemed to be terribly bothered, let alone protest them. There are certainly lessons to be learned from this. Third, we can come to understand Offred's unique position as a member of the transitional generation. Soon, there will be people who do not and cannot remember the time before Gilead. These individuals will have lost the ability to compare their lives to anything different, and they will be illiterate, both facts greatly reducing their ability to rebel or think critically about their situations. This is a frightening prospect!