The film, The Hunger Games is a trilogy that tells a story of unending oppression, exploitation and injustice in the society. In the plot, there are twelve districts that are ruled by the capitol, and they are destitute, most of the inhabitants die as a result of starvation. The trilogy Hunger Games is set at some time in the future, and this story takes place in Panem. The setting consists of a capitol and twelve other districts though they were initially thirteen which were and ruled by the capitol.The Social Justice Issues
Social injustice manifestation occurs in relation to poverty. Evidently, there is a great disparity for those who live in the Capitol and those who live in other districts. Among the most notable issues of poverty is lack of food. Many of the people who live in some of the districts do not have enough food to sustain them. Starvation is clearly evident in the 12 Districts. Katniss has to hunt illegally in some of the woods for her to feed her family (Collins, 2008).
People who stay in the districts eat leftovers that are thrown in the streets. For instance, Katniss is faced by a situation in which she finds out that the Peeta’s family owns a bakery but they cannot afford the food that they bake. They are forced to eat leftovers. On the other hand, when Katniss goes to the Capitol she gets to live a different lifestyle (Collins, 2008). The food in Capitol is abundant and rich. Most of the families eat prepared dishes elaborately and always hold lavish feasts. Katniss for the first time eats hot chocolate.
Discrimination and inequality depict the lack of social justice (Churchland, 2012). Inequality and discrimination of the poor are also shown in the selection of the tessera for the games. The rules are that the selection of the players should be picked without any form of discrimination. The rich are the ones who end up in the tribute. Their positions are exchanged for rations of oil and food. The poor children are selected by chance for the hunger games. The rich children consider it as an arena to compete in games while the poor tribute is like a death sentence to them. The rich children are trained in the game that is why they perform better than the children from the poor families.
Katniss, narrator in the story Hunger Games and the force that drives the story shows compassion and how social justice can be practiced even by the civilian without state powers. She uses volunteerism to show social justice. Being loving she volunteers to be part of this act that spells a death sentence for everyone who participates as there can only be one winner. She does this in the place of her younger sister prim, even with this in mind she goes ahead to do it. Katniss used civil disobedience and the people’s power to get justice to the victims. Katniss is a determined young woman. The moment there is a provision made for there to be two winners from the same district; she forms an alliance with Peeta to be able to get to the end of these games. Her efforts bear fruits eventually as they experienced a problem when the small provision was almost revoked. In the movie, the director shows the social power of a united people in fighting for social justice, more so, if they feel threatened in their own environment. People acquire the deviant actions from those they closely associate with. Gale Hawthorn, Katniss and Haymitch led the silent deviance to defeat social injustice. Gale Hawthorn is a close friend of Katniss and also someone they hunt together with, all through the games he offers advice to Katniss, which helps her be able to survive. Gale plays an important role as he seems to influence Kattnis actions. Haymitch Abernathy is district 12s only surviving victor in the last twenty-four years and acts as an instructor for Kattnis and Peeta.Social disorder
The film depicts various aspects of social disorder. As a response to the oppressive system and exploitation, the teenagers became deviant. Deviance is a social disorder characterized by the violation of the cultural norms either in informal or formal contexts (Higgins, 2011). In the movie, this characteristic of social disorder was exhibited when the thirteenth district was destroyed as a result of a rebellion against the capitol where the remaining districts was ungraciously defeated (Levine, 2006) This act of rebellion come with it some consequences where a boy and a girl who to fall in the age bracket of twelve and thirteen had to be selected from each of these districts to fight in the annual games.
Organizing games when the hungry compete for food, violently, is a social disorder. The games also show aspects of social disorder from the perspectives of the rich and the game organizers. This event is organized by the capital where they have to fight to death, and the winner takes away food for their district as prize. There is a great difference between the district and the capitol administrations system. The Capitol uses the orchestrated administration system to ensure that the population is under control. On the other hand, Katniss from the districts tries to become a revolutionary by administering the governance system in the rural areas. However, she is faced by antagonists in the formulation of the system (Collins, 2008). At first, she thinks that the Peeta’s family from the districts is her antagonists. However, she later realizes that Peeta’s family is ready to support her in all her endeavors. As the movie proceeds, she realizes that her true enemies are the Capitol. People from the capitol did not support the adoption of the administrative system in the district areas. Always ready to ensure that the disparity between the poor and the rich exists.Social disorder and Social cognitive theory
Social cognitive theory applies in the movie in the way Katniss reacts towards other characters. Social cognitive theory refers to the way someone thinks, interacts and feels about the other people around him or her. In the Hunger Games, Katniss forms an alliance with Rue. Rue is an expert in finding medical plants and hiding places. Katniss in return gives Rue food and security. However, Rue is killed when Katniss goes away. Katniss had to stay with Rue to benefit and in return Rue would get food and security. The interaction between Katniss and Rue brings out the social cognitive aspect (Churchland, 2012).Psychological perspective
In the movie, various aspects of psychological torment are evident. The movie has various scenes where tyranny and torture rain. The film depicts characters fighting against their oppression and exploitation the teenagers are exposed to a life of social neglect and poverty. The games deduce two psychological connotations. First, the organizers of the games and the targeted rich audience get the psychological satisfaction when they watch the games. They get entertained and feel happy. Second, the teenagers get psychological torture as a result of the abuse. Those who participate in these events are not given any regard. Being a highly televised event it’s meant to act as a form of entertainment for the capital and a cold war to remind the people from these districts that the capital was very powerful and ruthless. Katniss Everdeen, the protagonist of the story, takes part in this game together with others. She finds a way to survive in this dangerous Arena by entering a partnership with Peeta Mallark also a participant in these games. They survive this but unintentionally as a result of her rebellion cause the other districts to be unsettled.
The teenagers suffer mental anguish as a result of the parental neglect. The one scene that captures audiences’ attention is the one at the beginning of the story. Where Kattnis turns to look for her sister in bed and not finding, her thinks that she might have had nightmares and decide to go sleep with her mother (Collins, 2008). Child abuse occurs when a child is maltreatment and experience emotional or physical harm. The abuse also occurs when the children are not provided with the basic needs (Dubowitz, Pitts & Black, 2012). Making the teenagers scramble for food and suffer neglect constitutes psychological abuse. Because of the abuse, the movie portrays the teenagers with low self-esteem and anti-social behaviors.Therapeutic Suggestions
The challenges faced by the teenagers in the movie have therapeutic interventions. Psychological treatment or therapy is the process by which the psychologist interacts with the patient so as to establish the problem, its cause and try to find a solution or treatment to the problem (Akers, 2009). In most cases, the psychologist helps the patient establish the problem, its cause and a solution to his or her problem on his or her own. Treatment of the disorder requires the aid of a series of questions or role play. In the case of the abused teenagers, the aim of the psychologist during psychological treatment is to help the patient come to terms with the problem then help him or her deal with the problem.
For behavioral therapy techniques to work towards changing patient behaviors of the teenagers, from bad to good habits, the therapist needs to adopt a change attitude, respect, and observe the treatment routine, and exert extra effort by themselves (Akers, 2009). Adopting a positive change attitude helps to boost the teenagers’ inner morale to acquire positive behavior. They should be put in a normal education system to learn routine behaviors. Observing and respecting routine ensures that all aspects of the treatment plan are strictly observed hence achieve effectiveness. Just like in other forms of treatment, the therapist must emphasis to the teenagers that individual effort plays the most important role in their recovery.Conclusion
The Hunger Games is a movie that brings out different social issues evident in the society. The movie is filled with themes and underlying messages of the societal issues surrounding the world today. Some of the issues addressed in the movie include poverty, violence, deceit, child killing and questions of the government control (Akers, 2009). The ethical issues in The Hunger Games are clearly evident. The movie has focused on the issues that affect the young people in the society. Violence and murder are witnessed in the movie. Murder and violence are evident in the face of one of the characters who is Peeta. Lastly, Katniss becomes a reluctant fighter that is the main tribute that remains in the Hunger Game.
Akers, L. (2009). Social Learning and Social Structure: A General Theory of Crime and Deviance. New Brunswick: Transaction Publishers. Print.
Churchland, P. S. (2012). Brain-wise: Studies in neurophilosophy. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press.
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Dubowitz, H., Pitts, S. C., & Black, M. M. (2012). Measurement of three major subtypes of child neglect. Child Maltreatment, 9(4), 344-356.
Higgins, D. J. (2011). Differentiating between child maltreatment experiences. Family Matters, 69, 50-55.
Levine, F. (2006). Social Class and Stratification: Classic Statements and Theoretical Debates. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publ. Print.