Humankind has thought up of many different ways our future could be like. Some imagine robots and flying cars, while others think of freedom and peace. Although Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games and Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies seem to have nothing in common at first glance, their time setting is what makes them alike. Both taking place in a distant future, they both create an image of what the world could look like. However, robots and flying cars aren’t part of the picture at all.
In fact, they both have a view on the future that isn’t quite like what people would imagine.
First off, both books put a lot of emphasis on beauty. According to these books, plastic surgery could be a big thing in the future, much bigger than it is now. While only the population of the Capitol have access to these procedures in The Hunger Games, Katniss speaks a lot of how their looks barely even look human.
Dying their skin green, purple hair being seen everywhere, changing their eye color permanently, those are just some of the things the people of the Capitol do to make themselves “prettier”.
In Uglies, However, beauty is forced on everyone. In fact, at the age of 16, everyone gets a drastic transformation, where their entire body becomes symmetrical, their body proportions are remade and they basically become perfect humans. Thus, beauty is seen in a very different way than it is now in both novels. Furthermore, ancient humans (meaning us) are put to blame in both novels. Both societies living with limited resources, they have thought of multiple ways to overcome the difficulties we have left them with.
In The Hunger Games, Katniss speaks a lot of how her ancestors have destroyed the planet. Even though the Capitol has access to anything they could ever want, the 12 districts live in famine, sickness and poverty. The people in Uglies, however, live a rather comfortable life. Instead of living with limited resources, like the people of Panem do in The Hunger Games, they have found ways to create food and create new materials to make their buildings, clothes and other objects.
For example, their food is made of powder, which transforms into food. Hence, both books show that humankind is not doing much good for the future citizens of Earth. Also, both Tally and Katniss live in overly protected societies. While you would think we would acquire more freedom over time, it is certainly not the case in these novels. In Uglies, the people live under supervision their entire life, wearing a bracelet that monitors their every move. Once they’re 16, they move, but they remain in an overprotected environment.
Katniss lives a similar life. The citizens of Panem (except for those living in the Capitol) live in one district their entire life. They aren’t even allowed to leave the district. Although it’s not like they could, since they are kept in by an electrical fence. Indeed, the word “vacation” isn’t exactly part of their vocabulary. In fact, both populations in Uglies and The Hunger Games have no awareness of what there is outside their “world”, Tally never having gone out of her city, and Katniss never having left Panem.
Finally, if our future turns out to be like how it is described in these novels, it will be nothing like what most people expect. While they aren’t exactly alike, they both have a view on what beauty could be like, they both blame us (humans of today) for the world’s state and they show overly controlled societies. It may not be the innovative and technologic world most people anticipate, but who knows, maybe Collins and Westerfeld’s novels will turn out to be premonitory.
Cite this Comparison of Uglies and the Hunger Games
Comparison of Uglies and the Hunger Games. (2016, Nov 14). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/comparison-of-uglies-and-the-hunger-games/