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Analysis The Hunger Games: Capitol Efficient? Ethical? Successful? (Essay Sample)



This essay will discuss the role punishment (both physical and psychological) plays in The Hunger Games. Describe specific examples along with their purposes. Are the tactics used by the Capitol efficient? Ethical? Successful? How do they fit utopian or dystopian ideals? How do these examples fit into Michel Foucault’s discussion of punishment in Part One of Discipline and Punish? Most importantly, how are the forms of punishment discussed in both texts present in modern society as a means for achieving the American dream? The answers to these questions must appear in the essay, and please explain more details.

(3 pages in length, double-spaced, 12 pt. font  Times New Roman)


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Analysis of the Hunger Games
The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary defines the term punish as “to impose a penalty on for a fault, offense, or violation.” Another definition offered is “to deal with roughly or harshly.” In the dystopian society of The Hunger Games, punishment plays an integral role and makes it incredibly difficult for the people of the country of Panem to lead free lives. Punishment is often said to be the result of an offense or a consequence of a mistake. However, in the Panem country, punishment serves to keep the people within the grasps of the powerful political class found in the Capitol. This class works to make sure that the rest of the society is kept at bay and everything they do is approved or fits within their plans.
In the Panem society, punishment is used to deter people from going against the rules as well as in making sure the people are kept under control. For example, as Rue is talking to Katniss, she explains to her how people get killed in her district for keeping any food for themselves. District 11 is the agricultural district, however, the residents are not allowed to keep any of their produce and would be whipped if or when discovered. “Oh, no we’re not allowed to eat the crops…They whip you and make everyone else watch” (Collins, 197). Punishments are simply a way to make sure others learn a lesson and are never tempted to try what the recipient of the punishment did. Another example of how violence is used to deter people from going against the wishes of the Capitol involves the mentally disabled boy who was killed in District 11. Rue is still the source of this story and she is telling it to Katniss. She explains to her that even though the boy was mentally challenged, he was still killed for taking a pair of sunglasses. These were simply a way to keep everyone in check and make sure no one ever tries to go against the rules again.
Aside from physical punishment, there was also psychological punishment which was also being delivered through physical punishment as well. For example, when children are asked to kill each other for purposes of entertainment, this leads to the growth of animosity between the districts. So, instead of thinking as one people, the districts consider each other as enemies. T

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