A Critique of Pure Treason

In terms of matches made in heaven, pop culture and philosophy is one of my favourites. Not only is fiction a brilliant way to explore concepts of reality and humanity, but it’s a convenient way to enjoy your favourite film or book with the great excuse of ‘well, I’m studying it’, when caught procrastinating on your uni assignments.

I’ve been reading The Hunger Games and Philosophy: A Critique of Pure Treason, edited by William Irwin, a collection of philosophical essays exploring different aspects of the popular Hunger Games series (both book and film) by Suzanne Collins. The essays are great quality, analysing what the Hunger Games has to say about issues of morality (can it exist in the Arena?), feminism (Katniss as a woman and role model), genetic manipulation (muttations anyone?), Art (Peeta the painter) and of course, the romance (Spoiler alert** why did Katniss really choose Peeta over Gale?).

While the The Hunger Games is entertainment, it is also a sharp social commentary and political satire, so it’s great that Hunger Games and Philosophy identifies and dissects this side of the series, as I felt that the film adaptation glossed over this critical aspect of The Hunger Games.

Each essay covers a few great points, linking back to famous philosophers like Socrates , Kant and Nietchez, to examine the motivations of humanity, survival, celebrity iconography, the cost of war, to name a few. I’ve been really enjoying the essays; they are engaging, well researched and an excellent companion to the series.

The Pop Culture and Philosphy series doesn’t end with the Hunger Games, there is a great collection including Game of Thrones and Philosophy, Black Sabbath and Philosophy and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and Philosophy, it’s perfect for philosophy students or fans who want a great analysis of the series.

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