The Hunger games and philosophy (2012)

Review :

This installment of the popular culture and philosophy books felt fresh. It didn't just rehash the same things that the other similar books talked about. It's almost as if someone actually thought about what kind of philosophy is actually suggested by the book and went with that instead of with philosophy 101. I really appreciated a chapter on game theory and when it is worth it to betray your partners in the arena since ultimately only one of you can survive. The author showed that Katniss thought about this a lot, and it was ultimately a major part of the series rather than just philosophy 101 that could be forced into the book.

There was also a chapter on disciplining the body that talked about the body modifications of the people in the Capital as a way of distracting them from the fact that they are killing children for their entertainment.

There was a chapter on Just War that specifically looked at whether the rebellion was "just" which actually concluded that it was not because of the last bomb that killed Prim and the fact that they killed the soldiers in the caves and didn't have to do that. They considered the real world effects of injust wars and how the only reason this turns out good is because it is fiction.

Over and over we see philosophy applied to major parts of the Hunger Games instead of minor details that happen to illustrate a point. It was refreshing, and I hope all of the later installments of this series are as thought provoking.


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