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Social Issue of Government Control in the Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

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To begin with, in the science fiction dystopian adventurous film, The Hunger Games, directed by Gary Ross, inspired novel, written by Suzanne Collins. Published in 2008, The Hunger Games was one of the first novels in the sequence, where it presents to the readers and audience a future dystopian society, where a government that’s overpowering controls the people and resources of what’s known as tribes, the twelve different districts in the colony. Every year, two young representatives from the twelve districts are chosen by lottery and are forced to participate in the annual, Hunger Games. This game is broadcasted through Panem, party entertainment. These twenty-four representatives are forced to abolish their competitors. When sixteen-year-old, Prim, is selected as district twelve female representative, Katniss, her older sister volunteers to take her place. Together with Peeta Mellark, the male representative for district twelve is headed by train to the Capital to prepare for this brutal game. There were a number of themes and issues in this film. One of the main themes that are used throughout this series is government control.

Firstly, we witnessed that in the capitol’s rules, how they control districts, and their choice of entertainment. The Capitol demands rules such as individuals are not allowed to leave their district home unless it’s for the Hunger Games. To fulfill this rule all the districts are surrounded by fences to keep them inside, and to keep the outsiders outside. The Capitol also has a very strong connection to the districts. The Capitol uses each of the district for its resources. The people work to the bone, and take their resources from them every now and then, especially from district twelve. Then the major controlled, is the capital forcing twenty-four children to be a part of the annual Hunger Games, each year.

To add on, as you can tell the issue in this film, is the oppression by the people from the Capitol. The Hunger Games is away from the government to display its power and was designed to warn the people not to rebel against them. “The districts began rebelling against the capitol which obviously resulted in the unfortunate event of a total civil war breaking out. And yet, the capitol predictably took the title of “winner” by taking total destruction seriously and erasing District 13’s civilization forever. Now, the Hunger Games was the result of this happening and must go on,” said the mayor, announcing the annual Hunger Games to the crowd. The idea of power was being abused and corrupted by the government. The people are ruled and controlled by brutal individuals that will do anything to stay in power. For instance, when Gale talked about running away, Katniss reminded him that the government would most likely punishment, like cutting their tongues off if they tied. I believe, The Hunger Games was just away for the government to keep themselves in control of the people, pressuring fear in them. This gave me a reminder of what’s currently happening in our real world, in our society. Currently, in China, in Xinjiang, the Uyghur Muslim people are being tortured and abused physically and mentally by the Chinese government. It’s weird because it’s specifically only Muslim individuals who are being targeted. These innocent people are being tortured by the government, and being forced to things that are prohibited for them. The people were feared and abused by the government, which is similar to The Hunger Games.

In addition, for this social issue of government control, I believe it is trying to convey that whenever one is deep in oppression, it is right for one to stand up. Like every dystopian text or film, it’s always a group of people being targeted and is in limited access, and in the end, there’s that one person, who stands up and fights for what they believe is best. For instance, In the Hunger Games, Katniss stands up and denies to kill Peeta, and joins forces with him to go against the Capitol. To add on, just like in Harrison Bergeron. This dystopian society that is attempting to achieve a perfect world. This society focuses on the idea of equality, where strength, self-beauty, and intelligence have been oppressed by an authority, and in the end, Harrison goes against this idea, going against Handicap General and her men.

To add on, as you can tell there is no sympathy in The Hunger Games, but violence the population of the Capitol has to demand. The victims are dying a bloody death while the crowd cheers and us encouraging the killer. Taking the children, only to lead them to their destruction, destroys the hopes and the futures of the families and the communities of those involved. This is Capitol’s way of reminding the people to feel powerless and at their mercy. Simply put, it is Capitol’s way of saying ‘We could have wiped you out and we still can, so you better keep inline’, which, therefore, provokes hatred. This unequal distribution of wealth and social status scatters the individuals of many districts apart from each other. It is an effective procedure for the Capitol to prevent a future rebellion as the level of hatred that exists between the people of the community that prevents cooperation in any attacks on the Capitol. I also noticed that the distrust and division made by the games also take place on the people’s levels. For instance, the people who take bets on the two volunteers whose names will be drawn. Not only do these individual members make mockery and entertainment out of people’s misery, but they are also further dividing the community between those who are affected by the games and those who are not.

With the influence of the book, it had led up into a campaign launched by the socially activist group and the Harry Potter Alliance, called ‘The Odds In Our Favour’ where it had been inspired by the author’s work. The reading made them believe that is was a reflection of America. This movement helps promotes health care, voting, food, housing and employment for the homeless. If Collins books raised consciousness and lead to concrete actions, then the idea has fulfilled its job and Collins has succeeded in establishing her message.

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Social Issue of Government Control in the Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. (2020, September 01). GradesFixer. Retrieved June 16, 2021, from
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