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News & Politics News & Politics

Is Hunger Games a commentary on current U.S. politics, or just a story?

Posted by on Dec. 9, 2013 at 9:22 AM
  • 8 Replies

Political Hacks Want to Play 'Hunger Games' to Win Elections

by Jenny Erikson

Because apparently we must politicize all the things, the the Hunger Games franchise has sparked a political debate between the right and left over what’s really going on in Panem.

It seems as though both liberals and conservatives want to claim the story as their own, each side arguing that their side is clearly represented. The lefties say that it’s a “call for the downtrodden to rise up against the rich,” while the right says it’s an “Orwellian take on the dangers of big government.”

Sheesh.

You know what this debate says to me? That’s it’s an awesome story.

Truly great storytellers are able to weave a tale in which observers from all different backgrounds will be able to see themselves, and connect to the characters in some way. If you’re not rooting for or scorning characters in a story, then why bother paying attention?

I won’t lie … when I read the Hunger Games trilogy when it exploded onto the scene; I definitely saw it from a conservative viewpoint. I was actually sort of shocked that my leftist friends liked it. Don’t you see that you’re on my side?? I wanted to yell at them in caps on Twitter.

More from The Stir: 'Hunger Games: Catching Fire': The Good, the Bad & the Downright Ugly

But what I’ve truly come to appreciate is that everyone has different opinions about what’s wrong and right in our world, and how it should be fixed.

And one of the things that unites us is entertainment -- especially good entertainment.

The Hunger Games may or may not have been written with a political agenda, but that’s irrelevant. It’s a fantastic story of overcoming oppression, finding love, and most importantly finding what we are each truly capable of -- for better or for worse.

Those are the concepts that should transcend political lines. When we try to make it into a battle over which side of the aisle the story represents, we miss the point.

It’s a story of virtue and honor and betrayal and self-discovery. That’s something that speaks to all people -- not just Democrats or Republicans.

Do you think Hunger Games is a commentary on current U.S. politics, or just a good story?

by on Dec. 9, 2013 at 9:22 AM
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Replies (1-8):
IhartU
by Bronze Member on Dec. 9, 2013 at 10:40 AM


According to the author, herself, The Hunger Games was partly inspired by the Greek myth of Theseus and the Minotaur.  Another inspiration was her father's career in the Air Force, which allowed her to have better understanding of poverty, starvation, and the effects of war.

4kidz916
by Gold Member on Dec. 9, 2013 at 10:45 AM

I've wondered about Monsanto and the govt controlling the food supply correlating to the movie.

JoJoBean8
by Silver Member on Dec. 9, 2013 at 7:50 PM

I think I am the only person who has still never seen or read the hunger games. 

blueforewolf
by on Dec. 9, 2013 at 8:42 PM

no - not at all  except for the fact that  most of the rich take advantage of those less fortunate 

29again
by Gold Member on Dec. 9, 2013 at 9:19 PM

I think it is more prophetic than anything else.

Clairwil
by Gold Member on Dec. 10, 2013 at 2:19 AM


Quoting IhartU:


According to the author, herself, The Hunger Games was partly inspired by the Greek myth of Theseus and the Minotaur.  Another inspiration was her father's career in the Air Force, which allowed her to have better understanding of poverty, starvation, and the effects of war.

Battle Royale (バトル・ロワイアル Batoru Rowaiaru?) is a novel by Japanese writer Koushun Takami. Originally completed in 1996, it was not published until 1999. The story tells of junior high school students who are forced to fight each other to the death in a program run by the authoritarian Japanese government, now known as the Republic of Greater East Asia.

Battle Royale takes place in 1997 in an alternate timelineJapan is a member region of an authoritarian state known as the Republic of Greater East Asia (大東亜共和国?, Dai Tōa Kyōwakoku). Under the guise of a "study trip", a group of students from Shiroiwa Junior High School (城岩中学校 Shiroiwa Chūgakkō?) in the fictional town of Shiroiwa, in Kagawa Prefecture, are gassed on a bus. They awaken in the Okishima Island School on Okishima, an isolated, evacuated island southwest of Shodoshima (modeled after the island of Ogijima). They learn that they have been placed in an event called the Program. Officially a military research project, it is a means of terrorizing the population, of creating enough paranoia to make organized insurgency impossible.

The first Program was held in 1947. Fifty third-year junior high school classes are selected (prior to 1950, forty-seven classes were selected) annually to participate in the Program for research purposes. The students from a single class are isolated and are required to fight the other members of their class to the death. The Program ends when only one student remains, with that student being declared the winner and receiving a government funded pension. Their movements are tracked by metal collars, which contain tracking and listening devices; if any student should attempt to escape the Program, or enter declared forbidden zones (which are randomly selected at the hours of 12 and 6, both a.m. and p.m.), a bomb will be detonated in the collar, killing the wearer. If no one dies within any 24-hour period, every collar will detonate simultaneously and there will be no winner.

After being briefed about the Program, the students are issued survival packs that include a map, compass, food and water, and a random weapon or other item, which may be anything from a gun to a paper fan. During the briefing, two students (Fumiyo Fujiyoshi and Yoshitoki Kuninobu) anger the supervisor, Kinpatsu Sakamochi, who kills both. As the students are released onto the island, they each react differently to their predicament; beautiful delinquent Mitsuko Souma murders those who stand in her way using deception, Hiroki Sugimura attempts to find his best friend and his secret loveKazuo Kiriyama attempts to win the game by any means necessary (stemming from his lack of ability to feel human emotion due to a partial lobotomy caused by a car crash while in utero) and Shinji Mimura makes an attempt to escape with his best friend, class clown Yutaka Seto.

JanuaryBaby06
by on Dec. 10, 2013 at 6:19 AM

very cool!

Quoting IhartU:


According to the author, herself, The Hunger Games was partly inspired by the Greek myth of Theseus and the Minotaur.  Another inspiration was her father's career in the Air Force, which allowed her to have better understanding of poverty, starvation, and the effects of war.


JanuaryBaby06
by on Dec. 10, 2013 at 6:20 AM
1 mom liked this

Kind of OT Hunger Games reminds me of that short story the Lottery though. Anyone ever read that?

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