Government over Reach in the Hunger Games Essay
- Date:Jan 08, 2021
- Category:The Hunger Games
The novel “The Hunger Games” refers to a 2008 dystopian book written by United States writer Suzanne Collins. The setting of the story is in a future dystopian post-apocalyptic Panem nation, located in North America. The story from the name “The Hunger Games” involves a yearly event where one girl and boy of ages twelve to eighteen taken from all the twelve districts, are picked by lottery to be a contestant in a traditional fight known as Battle royal which is televised.
The books in the novel portray Panem as a nation that has always existed with a set of institutions of oppression and political norms. However, if you consider the Panem government to be actual or existent authoritarian regimes or governments, you get the view that the political stability in Panem is more precarious.
First off, the Panem government in its actual form is considered to be the one that supported the novel’s title the Hunger Games, which lasted for seventy-five years before creating the civil unrest witnessed in Panem. This period is way long by dictatorship standards where the collapse of such regimes are after the death or deposal of the founding dictator, but should not take long as the Panem’s case. There has only existed one to two generations from the Dark Days, meaning there would still be people living during Mockingjay who visualizes Panem nation as “the new regime.”
It is also pretty apparent that Panem lacks the rule of law or justice and that whatever the nation’s president Mr. Snow together with his ruling elites desires to do are done by decree. Like most authoritarian governments, there is no political system or coherent ideology in Panem. It is markedly clear that any newly invented ideology or ideas are done with the intention of justifying the whims of leaders or the rulers.
One common feature of authoritarian governance though is fear or worry about outsiders. Many of these regimes justify themselves through the argument that they are safeguarding their people from some external existential threats. However, this is not the case in Panem. On weird thing here is that there is nothing that touches on Panem’s outside borders. The nation’s leaders are not worried about any fear from abroad, and there is almost no presence of militarism in Panem. This action makes us believe that Panem’s militarism is inwardly converted. The citizens of Panem are worried about the return of the Dark Days. However, the government with cruelty would not keep the secret about District 12’s existence to prevent the repeat of these days. History depicts that it would be better and far more powerful for the nation to justify its own rule as an external or outside enemy.
The government of Panem also are expressing their ideologies or issues through culture and architecture. My head cannon is the way Panem displays itself as restructuring or rebuilding the lost world during the DARK Days along with the environmental or surrounding troubles that followed. In the real world, the modern American cities of Chicago and New York may seem to lie underwater, and it may appear that Panem’s capital city “Capitol” could also be in that circle trying to recreate or reform a similar sense of grandeur. The technique is also a similar pattern to how the Italian Fascists, the Soviets, and the Nazis reinterpreted the Roman architecture into the buildings so as to tie their governance at that particular period with the previous ideologies of glory. This is not the case in Panem, the modern sporting activities or events in Panem such as the NFL and NBA, among others are crucial elements or facets of a collapsed society (Collins, 2008).
Panem may also be considered as an authoritarian police nation or state or rather a totalitarian dictatorship. It is most certainly not a country with parliamentary democracy, constitutional monarchy, or does not possess any form of fairly elected representative government which is so much enjoyed by most of the modern Western world nations. From the stories in the novel, we can see that its districts lack representatives at Capitol where most of the government activities are carried out. The district’s mayors are only acting in a bid to ensure that the districts are carrying on with their works, and they serve no duty or any role as a congressman, parliamentarian, or even a senator.
The other point is also that the food supply is also controlled or managed by the government. The government affects this process through the use of the tesserae system as well as the housing system. From the story, it is also clear that the country’s citizens do not enjoy or benefit from the fruits of their hard labor. What they garner are taken to the nation’s headquarters at Capitol. The government also makes sure that there are no free markets and owning any private property (Collins, 2008).
Lastly, Panem’s government has also made sure that people do not enjoy their right to movement. From the stories, the movement of Panem people are restricted, and they cannot move freely throughout their country. Also, there are so many cases of police brutality in Panem.
Collins, Suzanne. The Hunger Games. Scholastic, 2008.