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Repost: Hunger Games, population, infrastructure, and technology - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Repost: Hunger Games, population, infrastructure, and technology
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lilacsigil From: lilacsigil Date: January 12th, 2017 08:34 am (UTC) (Link)
Thinking about rural Australia, there still are roads (apart from between major population centres), only they're not roads so much as tracks. They're great for moving small numbers of people who know the terrain, when the season is right. And Panem would have old infrastructure to work over, just like parts of England formed along the old Roman roads. But maintaining a major road network let alone the vehicles to use it swiftly is not going to happen. There might be a few major roads between districts to allow quick travel in case of sabotage of vulnerable train lines, but they would also be seasonal and more suited to heavy vehicles than troops. The troops get to go by train or walk.

Also, in Australia you only have to have 10,000 people to call yourself a city, so I guess 9000 is pretty close!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 12th, 2017 08:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
Maybe there'd be a serious road system between, say, 3 and the Capitol -- technology seems like something the Capitol would want constant access to. We never hear Katniss talking about any roads into the Capitol from the attack route in 13. If the Capitol is on the Western slope of the Rockies, that would also be a limiting factor -- roads through the mountain passes are notoriously bad for upkeep. So maybe, from the east, there's just the one train.

But you bring up an interesting point about the tracks that small numbers could move on. I'd bet there are quite a few around districts like 2 or 10 or 7, where there's a lot of internal ground to cover.

Towns and cities are pretty arbitrary here, often defined by the state. Technically, my village was mostly in a town of hte same name, though part of the village was in the next town, and also in the town were several hamlets -- mostly crossroads where a few people had built houses. Then there was the "city" just north of us (Batavia) where the "Entering the city of Batavia" sign was right by the silo of a barn on a big dairy farm.
From: (Anonymous) Date: January 13th, 2017 06:16 am (UTC) (Link)

Transportation in Panem

There's also the matter of controlling movement in Panem.

I read an article about how Spain cleverly avoided the possibility of being invaded by railroad from France: they made their tracks a different width. Thus, French trains could not run on Spanish tracks.

Now apply that to Panem. The Capitol doesn't want people moving from District to District. So they build transportation technology -- hovercrafts and high-speed railways -- that can't be used without certain vehicles of which they have a near-monopoly. Furthermore, they can monitor those routes for intruders.

If they did build roads, rebels with a jury-built car or truck might be able to use them. (At the Georgia Institute of Technology, the engineering students used to be challenged to build cars from scratch -- the "rambling wrecks from Georgia Tech")

By the way, nice to see that you still have an interest in the Hunger Games Universe.
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