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Catching Fire

Book Project
by

Alex Beam

on 29 April 2011

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Transcript of Catching Fire

CATCHING FIRE
By Susan Collins 1984
By George Orwell PLOT- CATCHING FIRE The main conflict in Catching Fire is that the main character, Katniss, must save her loved ones from execution by complying with her orders from The Capitol. The Capitol is the corporate control that manipulates Katniss’ society by execution, starvation, poverty, and most importantly The Hunger Games. The Capitol has threatened the execution of Katniss’ family and friends because of her performance in the previous Hunger Games. She broke the rules of The Hunger Games by faking to be in love with one of her teammates and defying and order from the capital. Although she managed to spare her life and win the games, her actions were seen by the Capitol as an act of revolt. Her subtle rebellion sparked the incite of riots and rebellion across the nation. Katniss must prove on her televised tour though all the twelve districts of her nation that she is deeply in love with her teammate Peeta. Hoping that convincing the nation of their love will end the Rebellion. In 1984 the main character Winston lives in a world controlled by a corporate named Big Brother. Big Brother represents all things good and privileged in the Nation of Oceania. Every aspect of human nature is controlled and conditioned in Oceania, making it a bureaucratic control as well. Winston is starting to understand the tangle of relentless regulations and inconsistencies of his occupier. An internal conflict ensues within Winston on whether or not he should keep living his fake life, or try to find something more. In time, Winston becomes a rebel trying to escape the Thought Police, and find refuge as a natural man with his lover Julia. Winston’s instinctive trust for a man named O’Brien later becomes an external conflict because O’Brien is an officer of the Thought Police that betrays and tortures him. Winston’s problems never really get resolved, but tend to get worse; he is tortured and striped of the simple humanity that he had developed in this rebellion. I guess you could say that he did resolve his internal conflict in his love for Julia and ability to think for himself for a short time until he is tortured. He is then sent back out to the streets with a mindless obedience to Big Brother like the rest of Oceania. PLOT- 1984 The character Winston is born within a Bureaucratic control society where the barriers of the world have taught people how to think. This has defiantly impacted Winston’s personality, or even eliminated Winston’s personality. He finally realizes that he can alter his thoughts as long as he does it discretely, and makes note that the only thing you really own in Oceania is the three cubic centimeters in your skull. As Winston starts to think his mind evolves and starts discovering the inconsistencies of the party and the stupidity of its citizens. Winston realizes and detests the way the natural rights of thought are taken from him and his peers. This changes him from a humble worker and follower of big brother, to a revolutionary writing: “DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER, DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER”. CHARACTER: WINSTON- 1984 1984 takes place in the nation of Oceania. Oceania is the dominant power of London, the city where Winston lives. The story takes place throughout London: like Winston’s apartment, Winston’s job at the Ministry of Truth, and a secret apartment without a Telescreen above a proles antique shop. Orwell describes many of these places as barren and rundown, with the paint peeling and the pungent smell of cabbage. I imagine a gray world with almost all the happiness sucked out of it. It is safe to say that the landscape of Oceania is a textbook example of a Dystopia. SETTING- 1984 Catching Fire takes place in the fictional Nation called Panem. Panem is split up into 12 districts, there used to be 13 but the 13th district was destroyed before the book takes place. This district was destroyed because of its rebellions against the dystopian superpower of Panem: The Capitol. The totalitarianism of The Capitol has desecrated many of the districts to extreme poverty as well as favored others to extreme wealth. The unjust nature is sensed in many of Panem’s residents, but they have no leader or means in which to revolt. In the poorer districts of Panem the landscapes are depressing and the people are starving. In the wealthier areas people are unnaturally beautiful, their skin stained with colors and their faces surgically enhanced. The wealthy people have all the food they could ever want and even make themselves puke when they’re full in order to indulge themselves even more. SETTING- CATCHING FIRE CHARACTER: KATNISS- CATCHING FIRE Katniss, the main character in Caching Fire, is very independent although she lives in a world of many rules and restrictions. Before Katniss was chosen for of the Hunger Games, she hunted in the wilderness in order to feed her family. It’s illegal to leave your district and hunt but she took her risks and broke the law. This was partially because she needed the food to survive, but also because took pleasure in the feeling of defiance. Katniss, like main other residents of Panem, believe they should have a better life. Believe in a social reform, a nation where everyone is equal with no need to answer to the higher power of their capitol. Katniss is also very detail oriented; she notices many things about people that would otherwise be overlooked. These details enable the reader to see the evil of her society just as Katniss does, giving the reader a more personal experience in the story. POINT OF VIEW- CATCHING FIRE Catching Fire is told from Katniss’ first person point of view, so you are aware of her thoughts and emotions at all times. This helps to merge you with Katniss’ character while reading. Her reactions to certain situations become predictable to you, and her thoughts toward certain topics become your thoughts. The way you are embezzled inside her head makes your views toward her dystopia very bias. Injuring your own opinion and causing you to think like her. 1984 is written in a Third Person, Limited Omnipresent. Much of 1984 is in third person but some portions are in first person. In certain parts of the book you are only reading the story; narrator is speaking about what is happening to Winston. But as the novel progresses to first person you start to feel Winston’s emotions, his pains, and start to sympathize with him. Although you get inside Winston’s head throughout the bulk of the novel, the point of view switches back to third person as Winston is returning back to society. You can no longer relate to him, he is no longer quite the human he used to be. Orwell builds an attachment to a character through point of view and then manages to make the reader feel awful when that attachment is ripped free. Much of Orwell’s writing genius can be seen in this technique. POINT OF VIEW- 1984 CLAIM TWO: CITIZENS LIVE IN DEHUMANIZED STATE 1984 CATCHING FIRE On page 19 Katniss expresses the appearance of President Snow as unnatural:
“President Snow smiles and I notice his lips for the first time. I’m expecting snake lips, which is to say none. But his are overly full, the skin stretched too tight. I have to wonder if his mouth has been altered to make him more appealing. If so, it was a waste of time and money, because he’s not appealing at all.” (pg. 19) In 1984 O’Brien tells Winston that if he really is the last real human he should take a look at himself in the mirror. There is irony in the way that the people of Oceania do not have unnatural bodies, but unnatural minds. Although Winston still has a pure mind, you can see his altered appearance on page 224 when Winston is examining himself through a mirror:
“The barrel of the ribs was as narrow as that of a skeleton; the legs had shrunk so that the knees were thicker than the thighs. He saw now what O’Brien had meant in seeing the side view. The curvature of the spine was astonishing. The thin shoulders were hunched forward so as to make a cavity of the chest, the scraggy neck seemed to be bending double under the weight of the skull. At a guess he would have said that it was the body of a man of sixty, suffering from some malignant disease.” (pg. 224) CLAIM ONE: INFORMATION, INDEPENDADANT THOUGHT, AND FREEDOM ARE RESTRICTED 1984 CATCHING FIRE During the victory tour Katniss and Peeta make a stop in District 11 to make a speech in front of a crowd of hardworking District 11 residents. Their speech pays respect to Rue and Thresh who were former contestants in the 74th Hunger Games. Rue was a good friend of Katniss in the arena by saving her life but sacrificing her own. What happens after her speech is an example of how independence is restricted and any type of respect for an independent person can result in death:
“There’s a long pause. Then, from somewhere in the crowd, someone whistles Rue’s four-note mockingjay tune. The one that signaled the end of the workday in the orchards. The one that meant safety in the arena. By the end of the tune, I have found the whistler, a wizened old man in a faded red shirt and overalls. His eyes meet mine.” (pg. 61)
“…from the deep shade of the verandah, we see the whole thing. A pair of Peacekeepers dragging the old man who whistled to the top of the steps. Forcing him to his knees before the crowd. And putting a bullet through his head.” (pg. 62) In 1984, Winston’s job is to rewrite the past, restricting Oceania from any true information.
“All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary. In no case would it have been possible, once the deed was done, to prove that any falsification had taken place.” (pg. 36)
CLAIM THREE: CITIZENSARE PERCIVED TO BE UNDER CONSTANT SURVEILLANCE In Catching Fire the tributes that enter in the Hunger Games are always under constant surveillance in the arena. Since the Hunger Games are televised; there is always someone watching you, and usually hundreds of people are watching you. For example, in the end of The Hunger Games Katniss and Peeta break the rules that there can only be one winner. They do this by threatening to kill themselves. The people surveying them or watching them on TV are the oppressed residents of Panem just waiting for a reason to revolt. Due to the constant surveillance of the general public, Kantiss’ and Peeta’s little act of revolt sparked a revolution in Catching Fire. In 1984 the idea of constant surveillance is at its extreme. Thoughtcrime is the largest offence; most people are vaporized for even making a facial expression that resembles unorthodoxy. Telescreens are always surveying you, there is almost nowhere to hide. The only reason Winston is not instantly scooped up by the Thought Police is because he has found places to hide from the Telescreens when he commits Thoughtcrime. In Oceania you don’t even have to commit Thoughtcrime to be acused of it. For example, Winston’s friend Syme is very intelligent, but Winston believes that Syme is almost too intelligent to be kept alive, Syme thinks to differently than the rest of society so he is thought of as a threat by the Thought Police. This goes to show that in Oceania; even if you stray from the mindless laws of thinking for one moment, you are always seen, and you will always be caught and vaporized. 1984 CATCHING FIRE DYSTOPIAN PROJECT
By Alex Beam Katniss fails in stopping the uprisings and soon finds that as the twist of the 75th Hunger Games; all previous Hunger Games winners must compete. This sparks a new problem: her survival. Luckily she has alliances with a number of individuals including: Peeta her lover, Haymich her coach, Finnick a man who won the games at age twelve, and Finnick’s eighty year old coach, Mags. In the arena Katniss directs lighting at the force field that holds the contestants in the Hunger Games. The force field is dissolved and much of the arena collapses. After being injured by the collapse, Katniss wakes up to find that she is being transported along with many of her allies through District 13. District 13 is thought to have been destroyed in the past by the cruel and corrupt government of The Capitol. Katniss learns that her good friend Gale has rescued her family from their home district, right before it was destroyed much like District 13 was. Her initial conflict of her family’s safety has been resolved, but a new conflict is born: Peeta has been captured by The Capitol. REAL LIFE APPLICATION-
BOTH NOVELS In both books the characters live in a totalitarianism society. Some countries nowadays slightly resemble these coorporate powers. Luckiliy the country we live in, The United States is free, and we are not so strictly controlled. Some countries do experience this type of control, take Soviet Russia and Communist China for example. Those places are very much totalitarianism and the citizens obey strict rules. These rules are not as extreme as those in the books 1984 and Catching Fire, but if they are not kept under control, they may escalate.
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