The Hunger Games and the Gospel: an endorsement

by Brian Walsh

ImageJust this week, as the Hunger Games movie premiers around the world, a fine little ebook has been published by Patheos Press called The Hunger Games and the Gospel. The author, Julie Clawson might be known to some readers because of her fine blog onehandclapping or because her very helpful book Everyday Justice: The Global Impact of our Daily Choices.

Julie asked me to read the new book and consider writing an endorsement. I liked the book so much that I wrote two endorsements. My daughter Madeleine liked the second one better, but the publisher went with the first. So, without further ado, here is the second endorsement that I wrote:

Julie Clawson writes out of a breadth of biblical understanding, serious commitment to Christian discipleship, love of a good story and with all the passion and day to day wisdom of a mom. That’s right. A mom. There is so much to commend this creative engagement with Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games trilogy. The way that Clawson plays with the resonances between the trilogy and biblical faith.

The way that she interprets the main character in terms of the virtues of the Jesus. The way that her interpretation honors the integrity of Collins’ work precisely by bringing it into play with her own faith perspective and in relation to contemporary life. But at the heart of it all, Clawson writes as a mom. Her kids and family life keep on popping up in the book. And so they should.

After all, what is it that the empire always wants from us – whether Panem in The Hunger Games, Babylon and Rome in biblical times, or our own imperial world of our own global consumerism? The empire always wants our children! And Julie Clawson is saying that her children are not up for grabs!

Brian Walsh
Brian is an activist theologian, a retired CRC campus minister, the founder of the Wine Before Breakfast community, and farms with Sylvia Keesmaat at Russet House Farm.He engages issues of theology and culture, and has written a couple of books you might want to check out. His most recent offering is cowritten with Sylvia Keesmaat and entitled Romans Disarmed: Resisting Empire, Demanding Justice.

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