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A good argumentative essay topic dealing with almost any work of literature is why and/or why not the work is effective as a piece of writing. So much attention is paid to the "content" of literature that very little is paid to the "form." Although the two are ideally inseparable, it is the form of any work -- the phrasing, the design, the skill of the writing -- that makes the work worth reading as a work of literature (that is, as a piece of writing in which we ideally admire the writing itself). You might want to focus on a part of the work that you found especially powerful, moving, memorable, etc., and ask yourself how, precisely, the author achieved this kind of impact. Think of close reading as slow motion replay applied to literature! Good luck with your project!
Questions I always think of are: In such a society, do you think rebellion is appropriate? Are the misfits rebels without a cause or heroes? Why is it that more people don't rebel? Of course the theme of the novel tells the author's perspective, but these are still questions worth exploring or such dystopia books wouldn't come out as often as they do. One of my favorites is We by Soviet author Yevgeny Zamyatin.
What questions did you have as you were reading? I have found that the best papers are about subjects/topics the student gets to choose or feels most passionately about...what arguments did you see? What can you defend? What interests you most? Do you think the society is realistic? Who is the true hero of the series? Katniss is the protagonist (one of them), but is she a true hero? Choose a topic that you care about, and then you will have half the battle won.
I think #2 gives you a number of good ideas that you could use for an argumentative essay. You might want to consider in addition to these excellent ideas the way that entertainment is presented and what that says about the society in this novel, and if there is a message for us. Certainly the concept of hosting a TV show where children are forced to kill each other until one child remains standing is barbaric, yet perhaps this novel is pointing towards the way in which we already enjoy reality shows and suggesting that this is their logical conclusion. What do you think?
You might want to consider what message the author is sending. This is definitely a dystopia or allegory. What is the author saying about our world? Why write this particular book, at this particular time? The book has disturbing content, such as children fighting and dying for food. What does this tell you about our culture? Why did the author choose to include it?
An argumentative essay is designed to allow the author make a claim and defend/justify the claim. Focus of the paper can be on an opinion, an interpretation, or the cause/effect of a situation within the story.
Some topics that would work for an argumentative essay regarding The Hunger Games could be:
1. Katniss changes in many different ways over the action of the novel.
2. Katniss and Peeta's relationship during the Hunger Games changed the way that Katniss regarded the Capitol.
3. The Hunger Games is a novel which makes one consider the idea of "big brother" in our nation today.
4. The Hunger Games is an excellent example of how a country can insure that only the strongest survive.
5. There are many aspects of pop culture in the novel The Hunger Games.
I hope one of these works for you. Good luck with your essay!
A few topics that you could choose include:
-how the revolution that occurred is a good thing that helped and needed to be done,or how it was a bad thing that shouldn't have happened.
-how that Capitol and its control was useful to the society, or how it was detrimental.
-how Katniss and the rest of the characters changed for the better, or perhaps worse, physically and psychologically.
Since it is an argumentative essay you can use how the characters have changed throughout the course of the series or even the course of the first book. How the characters in the books had a change of mind of the Capitol and how relationships changed. You can even put a point across of survival of the fittest.
Some good questions could include how the multitude of characters changed throughout the story.
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