On the Hunger Games trilogy
By V. Arrow
District 11 is one of the few places in Panem that we see firsthand through the Hunger Games novels. Although Katniss relates and infers information about District 4 and we see the ruins of a war-torn District 8 and the Nut in District 2, Catching Fire brings us directly into the main square of District 11, where we see the populace of the district, its layout and aesthetics, and its relationship to the Capitol (through its reaction to the Victory Tour and the Peacekeepers’ reactions to the District 11 protesters). The amount of time that the novels spend in District 11, compounded by the importance of the roles played by citizens of District 11–Rue, Thresh, Chaff, and Seeder, as well as the protesters in the Victory Tour riot–makes it clear that District 11 is vitally important to the Hunger Games trilogy and Panem itself.
Our first pieces of information about District 11 come from Rue, in the conversations she and Katniss have in the arena. Rue describes her home district as “strict,” a place with enforced public whippings, constant hard work for all citizens–including children–and harsh punishments by the Peacekeepers. But even her descriptions did not prepare Katniss for her first glimpse of the district itself, during the Victory Tour:
Rue did give me the impression that the rules in District 11 were more harshly enforced. But I never imagined something like this.
Now the crops begin, stretched out as far as the eye can see. Men, women, and children wearing …