Naomi Alderman on the World That Yielded ‘The Power’

Naomi Alderman, the author of “The Power.” “The Power,” Naomi Alderman’ recent work of speculative fiction, tackles a freighted question: What would happen in a conventional society if the roles of men and women were flipped, that women were the aggressors? The “power” of the title is embedded in young women. Lodged within a strip of muscle running along their collarbones, it can produce a deadly electrical charge that renders them able zap men at will, enfeebling or exterminating them, or just jolting them for sexual kicks. Given that kind of control, how would they act? Would they harness their energy create a world envisioned in books like “Herland,” the 1915 feminist fable in which a treacherous male-dominated universe gives way a matriarchy of peace, justice and empathy? Probably . In her dystopian tale, Ms. Alderman, 42, conjures hellish scenes in which rampaging females roam the countryside, maiming and killing, she writes, “because they can.” Her , first published in England, resonated with American readers. Published last year by Little, Brown, it was named one of the New York Times ’s 10 Best Books of 2017 and has been described as “A Handmaid’s […]

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