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The Hunger Games and Philosophy: A Critique of Pure Treason Paperback – February 28, 2012

4.7 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (February 28, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118065077
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118065075
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #740,331 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By John V. Karavitis on February 26, 2012
Format: Paperback
The release of this latest entry in Wiley-Blackwell's "Philosophy and Popular Culture" series is timed to slightly precede (by about a month) the theatrical release of the movie based on Suzanne Collins' trilogy "The Hunger Games". Per an alleged movie review on IMDB, the movie is spectacular and does justice to the trilogy. In likewise fashion, so does this collection of essays. Wiley-Blackwell stays true to its formula of covering a wide number of philosophical themes with well-written and readable essays. The book exhibits the typical attention to detail and structure that I have come to expect of entries in this series. In the "Notes" section at the end of each essay, the reader will typically be directed to other essays within the collection that develop specific issues in greater detail. Having never read the Hunger Games trilogy, I was somewhat apprehensive about whether I would be able to follow the discussions well enough to appreciate the attention given to the philosophical themes. Rest assured, the essays are so well-written that this is not an issue. In fact, readers coming to this collection of essays with no foreknowledge of the trilogy will come away feeling as though they had read it, even lived through it. Those who have read the trilogy, and even those who will only see the movie, will enjoy this book immensely.

This collection of nineteen essays is divided into seven sections, with the following topics: (1) art, music, and metaphor; (2) morality; (3) science; (4) the ethics of caring and gender; (5) authenticity and identity; (6) warfare; and (7) political philosophy. Overall, the essays were well-written, even interesting, and definitely enlightening.
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Format: Paperback
During the course of my research for a paper on the Hunger Games, I found this book had a timely release. The essays it contains are well-written, clear, and utilize a philosophical approach to the novels. This book builds upon and deepens a foundation of research that was started with the anthology known as THE GIRL WHO WAS ON FIRE: Your Favorite Authors on Suzanne Collin's Hunger Games Trilogy. By collecting essays from a number of academes, this collection is able to delve deeper into much more than was covered in The Girl Who Was On Fire. Still, both books have their merits, but for academic research, The Hunger Games and Philosophy may have a greater academic reception. I particularly found myself drawn to essays contending the morality of the world of Hunger Games, the characters, and even the moral "rightness" of the nature of war. Questions of identity and even gender are explored -- both areas that I am largely concerned with for the purposes of my paper. Overall, a really great collection of essays that draws heavily upon many philosophers and theorists including Kant, Darwin, Einstein, Butler, and Hobbes (to name a few).
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The best quality of the pop culture and philosophy series is its ability to expand on the source material in a compelling way that makes every subsequent viewing more interesting and intellectually satisfying. This particular edition with the Hunger Games ranks among my favorite among my small collection (Watchmen, Final Fantasy, Matrix, Inception) and every essay is of high quality and is accessible, not overly and overtly, in some cases, enigmatic. I recommend this entertaining and enlightening book, but buy it used! Help conserve the planet you live on!
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As someone who first rejected the premise upon which 'Hunger Games' was written, I appreciated the extra philosophical comparisons and contrasts of 'The Hunger Games & Philosophy' to help me focus on what young readers are up against as far as viewing reality television is concerned. I am one of the over-50 crowd and don't have much time for TV. The extreme disparity between the people of the Capitol and the people of the Districts was unsettling in the film version, but clearly necessary for the heroine to grow and develop into a compassionate individual and make a difference/create change when the odds did not seem in her favor. I walked out of the movie unnerved; however, after reading the trilogy and using the 'Critique of Pure Treason' to reconnect with how a younger audience may view televised social situations, as well as the possibility of having to defend themselves against an enemy (for whatever reason), I had a clearer understanding of why Ms. Collins wrote her books. Her ability to use the subject of media manipulation of an audience/population was exceptional. After all, reality TV aside, aren't relentless commercials used to maneuver us into how we see ourselves, which products to purchase, to encourage us to behave in a certain manner? This has been going on forever, but it was made extraordinarily extreme in 'Hunger Games'. Although I do not see the possibility of a 'Hunger Games' in our near future, I can see the development of freedom of expression through alterations and enhancements of our individual bodies gaining traction. There is a huge gap between what is considered high fashion and the opposing desire to look, feel and "be" natural.Read more ›
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