Pork: The most satisfying yet, unsatisfying thing in history.Josie OsterhausMrs. Cathy EnnekingEnglish II18 December 2017Josie OsterhausMrs. Cathy EnnekingEnglish II18 December 2017Pork: The most satisfying yet, unsatisfying thing in history. “It’s excellent shooting. Katniss turns to the Gamemakers.
A few are nodding approval, but the majority of them are fixated on a roast pig that has just arrived at their banquet table. Suddenly I am furious, that with my life on the line, they don’t even have the decency to pay attention to me. That I’m being upstaged by a dead pig” (Collins 101). This is what Katniss Everdeen, the main character in The Hunger Games, thinks when she gets less attention than a cooked pig in her private session with the Gamemakers. In the novel The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, the roast pig is regarded as more significant to the Gamemakers then a tribute who is fighting for his or her life. Obviously, the pig is not only a good source of protein and nutrition, but the symbolism of pork goes much more profound. The history of pork is directly connected to the symbolic meanings of pork in this novel.
To start, pork has an appealing background in biblical and religious importance, cultural attitudes, and mythology. The religious importance is associated with Leviticus 11:7, a life changing excerpt from the bible which explains, “..
. and the pig, because it parts the hoof and is cloven-footed but does not chew the cud, is unclean to you. You shall not eat any of their flesh, and you shall not touch their carcasses; they are unclean to you” (Clean and Unclean Animals). In many different cultures teeming with laws against and for pig. In keeping with Leviticus 11:7, The laws of Judaism, banned the consumption of pork in any way. They consider pork to be an impure animal as food (In Religion).
In Islam the consumption of pork is also forbidden and sinful. Pork is explicitly prohibited in quran “Forbidden to you for food are: dead meat, blood, the flesh of swine, and that on which hath been invoked the name of other than Allah” (In Religion). Pig and the consumption of pork in both Judaism and Islam is a pact with their religions. Today, pigs are still not eaten in the Jewish and Islamic households. “In Deuteronomy 14:3–6, You shall not eat any abomination.
These are the animals that you may eat: ox, lamb, and kid, gazelle, deer, and antelope, ibex, chamois, bison, and giraffe. And every animal that has a split hoof and has a hoof cloven into two hoof sections, and chews the cud among the animals that you may eat” (In Religion). Deuteronomy explains what one could eat and what one could not eat.Secondly, pigs are not ate in many regions for cultural differences. “In India, vegetarian meals are preferred. Muslims and Jews, however, do consume poultry, mutton, beef but, no pork, as laws in their respective religions declare pork not ‘halal’ or ‘kosher” (Beek). Halal accredits to what is acceptable or justifiable in old-fashioned Islamic Law.
In China the pig is described as naive, over-reliant, self-indulgent, gullible, fatalistic, and materialistic. (Pig (Chinese Zodiac)). Pork in China is obviously not something one will want in the chinese household. The Chinese Zodiac explains that pigs are, given due consideration, very lucky creatures at birth. They are always well fed and allowed their ways (Pig (Chinese Zodiac)). Picture a pig in the novella Animal Farm, by George Orwell.
The pigs are treated like kings or as in the novel Joseph Stalin. The book mirrors the events that prepared the way to the Russian Revolution, then on toward the Stalinist era of the Soviet Union. Next, there is mythology and folktales told of the pig.
“In Germany, pigs are known as a sign of good luck. Marzipan pigs are a popular delicacy, especially as a gift on New Year’s Eve. The marzipan pig is a traditional German and Scandinavian confectionery consisting of marzipan shaped as a pig” (In Religion). Marzipan is a dish or delicacy which consists of sugar or honey and almond meal, sometimes enhanced with almond oil or extract (Marzipan). “In Buddhism the deity Marici is often depicted riding in a carriage hauled by several pigs” (In Religion). When a person analyses the religious importance and cultural differences of pork, the symbolism of the pig becomes obvious.
First, the connection of “the pig was also a symbol of virility, strength, and fertility in ancient Chinese cultures. The boar is even among the animals in the Chinese zodiac where it is considered a symbol of sincerity, honesty, and determination” (Venefica). This directly connects to the novel as Katniss Everdeen is asked if she is good at archery. Haymitch asks her, “And you’re good?” “I’m alright,” Katniss says. Then Peeta goes on explaining that, “She’s excellent, My father buys her squirrels.
He always comments on how the arrows never pierce the body. She hits everyone in the eye. It’s the same with the rabbits she sells the butcher. She can even bring down deer” (Collins 89). Peeta goes on to explain how amazing Katniss is at the bow and arrow and hunting in all. Like most people in District 12, they have to find a way to put food on the tables for their family. Katniss’ “strength and virility” in her hunting show through.Along with the importance of religion, pork also symbolize “agriculture.
” “Native American cultures associated the pig as a harbinger of rains and as such, the symbolic meaning of pigs here is also linked to abundance, fertility and agriculture” (Venefica). This directly connects to the novel when Katniss and Rue are trying to find food to vanquish their hunger. As they are picking the berries and Rue is expeditiously finding the decedent seeds, Katniss is dumbfounded as she remembered that Rue was from “…
District Eleven. Agriculture,” I say. “Orchards, huh?” (Collins 199). Gaining knowledge from Rue indefinitely helped Katniss win the games. Lastly, the pig is a “symbol of ignorance in Buddhism, A black pig is illustrated on the Buddhist wheel of existence where it represents one of the three illusions of man in the Buddhist philosophy. Illusions of thought & desires, illusions innumerable as particles of dust and sand, and illusions about the true nature of life” (Venefica). This directly connects to the novel when Katniss is walking around the quarters in the District 12 apartment.
She explains how they “have so many automatic gadgets” and “the shower alone has a panel with more than a hundred options you can choose regulating water temperature, pressure, soaps, shampoos, scents, oils, and massaging sponges” (Collins 75) This explains how the Capitol is spoiled beyond what they need. In conclusion, out of all the foods and supplies found in The Hunger Games, the pig had an expanded biblical history and symbolic meaning. By the end of the novel, Katniss is one of the two winners of the hunger games. Like the pig, it is a luxury to have and to hold a piece of it. Works Cited Bamfield, Joshua, Prof. “Pigs in Religion and Folklore.” Professor Bamfield’s Rare-Breed Pigs. Accessed 14 Dec.
2017.Beek, Vincent Ter. “Why Do Some Cultures Shun Pork?” Pigprogress.
net, 29 Feb. 2016. Accessed 10 Dec. 2017.”Clean and Unclean Animals.” Biblegateway.com, 2001.
Accessed 28 Nov. 2017.Collins, Suzanne. The Hunger Games. New York, Scholastic Press, 2008.
Featherstone, Alan Watson. “Wild Boar.” Trees for Life, 1 Jan. 2017. Accessed 21 Nov.
2017.”In Religion.” Wikipedia. Accessed 29 Nov. 2017.”Marzipan.” Wikipedia.
Accessed 14 Dec. 2017.”Pig (Chinese Zodiac).” Nationsonline.org, 2017. Accessed 28 Nov. 2017.
Shephard, Sue. “Pickled, Potted, and Canned: How the Art and Science of Food Preserving Changed the World.” Pickled, Potted, and Canned: How the Art and Science of Food Preserving Changed the World, 2000. Accessed 28 Nov. 2017.Venefica, Avia. “Symbolic Meaning of Pigs.
” Symbolic-meanings.com, 3 Nov. 2007. Accessed 28 Nov.