Beneath the Hunger Games

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Kate Raffety
22nd of May, 2012
BENEATH THE HUNGER GAMES

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins is an insightful allegory set in a post-apocalyptic future. Through a gripping plot and intriguing characters along with rich intertextuality, symbolism and themes, she raises concerns and gives her opinion on issues in our communities and governments, taking many to the extreme to reinforce her message, while keeping it a fast passed fictional story. Government control of people is the most prominent theme in The Hunger Games, as it is featured throughout the novel in a variety of ways. Propaganda, censorship, inequitable distribution of wealth, and manipulation are some of the many ways in which the Capitol controls people. All the wealth and resources flow to the Capitol and it is in control of everything. It uses propaganda and censorship to influence and direct public opinion, and the only information the districts receive is from the Capitol. The government broadcasts are compulsory viewing and all of it is extremely biased and misleading. Sometimes half the truth is just as effective as a lie, with the capitol only selecting parts of the information to release, in this way it is easy to guide people’s opinions. This technique is used on the districts, with all of the information they receive, and on the people from the Capitol, with the information they receive about the districts. Together the districts could easily overthrow the Capitol, so it is important that they be kept weak and separated. The most important of the Capitol’s strategies for gaining and maintaining power, however, is the age-old technique of divide and conquer. It involves breaking up larger concentrations of power into chunks that individually are isolated and weak. The Capitol has absolute power over the districts, which is ultimately demonstrated by the games themselves. “Taking the kids from our districts, forcing them to kill one another while we watch- this is the...
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