English ACC 10
29 April 2013
Antigone vs. The Hunger Games: Gender Roles
Looking through a historical lens, gender roles for men and women have changed significantly. Men were perceived as being the most critical part in society as evidence by men having the highest paying jobs, and the most dangerous jobs, owned property, and could wed and divorce any woman at their will. In opposition, women were thoroughly encouraged to work at home, tend to plants, household duties, and care for children. Antigone, a play by Sophocles, is a perfect example of the historical context of gender roles. The contemporary film and book, The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins, is the complete opposite. It shows the evolution of gender roles from thousands of years ago until now. In Antigone, the women were expected to do as they are told without any question or reluctance. “Think how much more terrible than these our own death would be if we should go against Creon and do what he had forbidden! We are only women; we cannot fight with men, Antigone!”(Ismene 62)While men were able to create laws and for the most part do what they wanted, women were considered weak, unworthy of the privileges given to men, and in need of a man’s protection and should be left under a man’s watchful eye. This was one of the main reasons as to why women did not or could not have what the men had. While Antigone portrays the typical historical look at gender roles, the more contemporary film, The Hunger Games, depicts that as men and women have equal gender roles. “Our part of District Twelve, McKnight 2
nicknamed the Seam is usually crawling with coal miners heading out to the morning shift at this hour. Men and Women with hunched shoulders, swollen knuckles, many who have long since stopped trying to scrub the coal dust out of their broken nails.”(The Hunger Games 4) women and men worked side by side for the tasks provided to them....