What quotes show conflict in the book The Hunger Games?

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Kristen Lentz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Man versus Man

"Forget it, District Twelve.  We're going to kill you.  Just like we did your pathetic little ally..." (285).

The design of the hated Hunger Games pits the contestants from the districts against each other.  Only one tribute can survive, and Katniss faces brutal fights between herself and the other children from the districts.  In this particular quote, Clove has pinned Katniss to the ground and is ready to kill her; only at the last minute, Thresh rescues Katniss from being carved up by Clove's knife.

Man versus Society

"Listen up.  You're in trouble.  Word is the Capitol's furious about you showing them up in the arena.  The one thing they can't stand is being laughed at and they're the joke of Panem" (356-357).

Despite his drinking problem, Haymitch has enough perception to realize that Katniss has flouted the authority of the Capitol with her little stunt with the poisonous berries.  She has challenged the system, and many in the districts come to view her trick with the berries as an open act of rebellion against the merciless system of Hunger Games.

Man versus nature

"I think back to the years of watching tributes starve, freeze, bleed, and dehydrate to death.  Unless there's a really good fight going on somewhere, I'm being featured" (169).

Much of the difficulty of the Hunger Games surrounds the contestants' struggle to overcome the elements and satisfy their most basic needs: thirst, cold, hunger, heat, exhaustion.  Early on, Katniss becomes so dehydrated that she considers herself practically a goner.  She eventually finds water but later must escape a raging fire.  Other contestants are not so fortunate; on the very first night, one of the girls builds a fire to keep warm and is quickly overtaken and killed by the Careers.