Today I’m not writing anything practical or theoretical about sustainability or compassion. It’s more a philosophical thing I guess. A few months ago I re-watched one of my favorite trilogies; The Hunger Games Trilogy. I watched all films in two days, I just love them. The books are also my favorite, even though they’re fiction and I rarely read fiction. Anyway, the second time I watched this trilogy it got me thinking. That’s why I am writing about it today. My thoughts were: are The Hunger Games based on reality? Here’s why I think the Hunger Games are a reflection of reality.
The Hunger Games
Maybe you’ve never seen the films or read the books. That’s possible. I’d suggest you would still because I can really recommend it. But maybe then it’s good to tell you the storyline of the The Hunger Games. Be alert, I am going to spoil here. The Hunger Games is a trilogy written by Suzanne Collins. The story plays in a world named Panem. Panem is divided in segments. You have the districts and the capitol. There are 12 districts (where there used to be 13) and one capitol. Wherever people are born, they stay their whole life. You can’t go from district 4 to 1 for example. People know about the other districts and the capitol but they don’t interact with the people living in them.
The capitol is in charge of all the 12 districts. The districts are just there to provide the capitol with its needs. District 12 is for mining for example and district 3 is for electronics. District 12 is the poorest district and 1 is the richest. The capitol is ridiculously rich because the districts work for it. However, the capitol doesn’t appreciate this at all. The people are spoiled and take everything for granted. An example; they have special drinks to make people throw up their food at parties, just so they can eat and drink more food.
The capitol is in power. They are in power even though there has been a war. That’s when district 13 was destroyed, the people in district 13 came in uprising. Since the capitol has won the war and doesn’t want other districts to come in uprising, they organize annual Hunger Games. For this event two candidates are randomly chosen in each district and have to fight all the other candidates in an arena. They fight until everybody else is dead, there can only be one winner. This winner then becomes famous and can also enjoy the privileges of the capitol.
The Relationship with our World
Of course I don’t think the entire Hunger Games are an exact reflection of reality. I’m not some conspiracy theorist or something haha. I just feel like the system that was built for these books and films is roughly the same on our planet earth. I am going to try to explain what I mean. Back in the 16th century there were some countries who took control of most other counties. Take The Netherlands for example. The Netherlands has plundered the world in the 16th century, they did this with a lot of violence. Just like in Panem with the districts, there was a war and a powerful nation subjected all the other countries to work for them. This used to be the case in real life too, The Netherlands had colonies which worked for them. People were even enslaved, this makes us so rich today.
The similarities and differences
It’s not as black and white like it was then, today. There are no more colonies in this form. But still it feels like other countries work for us like the districts do in Panem. Since some countries today are rich, I feel like they’ve subjected other parts of the world to their needs. Just like in Panem, with the districts. In the real world countries like Germany and the Netherlands are the capitol and the poor countries (which are poor because of the rich countries and what they did to them) are the districts. I mean, in The Netherlands most people are extremely spoiled. You can buy whatever you want for little money. Exotic fruits and vegetables, clothes, jewelry, technology, etc. We are so spoiled that we waste a lot of food and a lot of people are overweight.
The poor countries work for all these things for us, for very little money in terrible conditions. Look at the garment industry in Bangladesh or the technology sector in China, to name some examples. That’s where the connection lies. I see the rich countries in our world like the capitol in Panem and the poorer countries like the Districts. So, in some ways this post is actually about compassion and sustainability. It’s just another way to look at the same problem. I see it as another reason to live sustainable and ethical. Other people on this planet should have the same life as I do. We should all be free and happy.
Maybe this is crazy but I just couldn’t stop thinking about it haha. When I watched the movies I felt like their world was terrible. But my own world is terrible too. Not for everyone, not all the time. And it’s getting better, I know that. I just saw this connection and couldn’t help to think whether it was intentional. Maybe Suzanne Collins sort of based The Hunger Games on the reality of today. I wouldn’t know but I she did.
Have you see the Hunger Games? If yes, do you also think The Hunger Games are a reflection of reality?