8 May 2012

Arrows of desire

Many allegorical readings of The Hunger Games have been essayed — most recently by no less an intellect than Stanley Fish in the New York Times today. But no one, as far as I’m aware, has understood the true meaning of the story, at least as presented in the first film. It’s obviously all about southern states’ hatred and resentment of the federal government in the US.

In The Hunger Games, the districts are forced, after a bloody civil war, to give tributes to the Capitol. The districts are poor rural areas, ie southern states; the civil war is, er, the Civil War; the Capitol is an amalgam of Washington DC and New York City, populated by decadent latte-sipping weirdos in strange clothes; and the tributes in reality are not sacrificial teenagers but… federal taxes. The Games themselves represent gleeful ubiquitous abortion. (It’s all about killing children, right?) President Snow (who cynically bangs on about “hope”) is, of course, President Obama.

It follows, most excitingly, that plucky heroine Katniss is a fictionalized version of another famous huntress: Sarah Palin. If the film wasn’t secretly funded by a cabal of Tea Partiers, it probably should have been. May the odds be ever in your favour…