What is the government like in The Hunger Games?
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The government in the future world of Panem is the Capitol, a totalitarian regime that strictly controls all aspects of life. They are decadent and immoral, killing dissenters and crushing rebellion without thought for human life. People living inside the Capitol itself have little thought for what goes on outside their borders; they think of District members as insignificant and unimportant, barely human and below their level. The cruelty of the Capitol is best seen in the institution of the Hunger Games themselves, which are designed to strike fear and misery into the districts to quell uprisings. By taking children from their parents and forcing them to fight to the death on public television, the Capitol demonstrates their total power and control. While the residents of the Capitol think of their government as benevolent, and their society as Utopian, the truth is that the government is a cruel and oppressive force, and their society is built entirely on the forced labor of the Districts.
The government crushes any hint of rebellion that it thinks could cause trouble. Individuals become Avoxes, and districts are suppressed through force. The Capitol also forces each district to give up two children each year, to compete in a killing game with one winner. The Capitol claims the games are to remind the districts of the destructive atomic war, but in reality, use the games to remind the districts of its hold over them.
However, the government depends on the districts it oversees to supply everything the people in the Capitol are used to in their lifestyle. Without the districts, the Capitol's economy and morale deteriorates.
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