Show me the money!

dolla dolla bills y'allJust imagine.

You’re walking down a Capitol street, your bright pink mink coat wrapped around your dyed-blue shoulders and your heel-less shoes stomping up the way. You come across this shop with a dress covered with ruffles – I’m serious, even the ruffles have ruffles – and you decide you have to have it. You reach into your pocketbook and you pull out…

What?

Something that I’m always interested to know when it comes to futuristic societies in books, TV and film is what has happened to the money. Since Panem is located in North America, it’s widely accepted among the fandom that it is comprised of parts of the United States, Canada and Mexico. It would not make much sense for just the American dollar, Canadian dollar, or the Mexican peso to be used as the currency of the nation.

We know that the “currency” of District 12 is primarily in the form of trade – though in the movie Katniss does ask the lady who sells her the mockingjay pin “How much?”, implying some use of money – but it seems unlikely that it is that way across all the districts and even more unlikely for the Capitol. Not to mention that in District 12, the trade economy seems more or less de facto rather than Capitol-sanctioned, considering the Hob goes up in flames in Catching Fire.

alternate_currency

So back to the scenario above. Do you hand over a card similar to our credit and debit cards? Has paper money at least in concept withstood the catastrophes that occurred prior to the formation of Panem, so you’re offering a bill worth 15 pans (15PN for short)? Is there a machine that scans your eyes or your fingerprint or a chip imbedded in your neck that links to a bank account?

We don’t know how the money thing actually works in Panem, but we know how the wealth does: the rich are über rich and the poor are devastatingly poor. Whatever the rich have, they have a lot of it, and whatever the poor have they barely have any of it.

Yo dawg that dress cost 2000 nemmies that’s outrageous
Twiffidy

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One comment

  1. I think there is a part where Katniss goes to the hob and buys things with coins because she now is a victor and doesn’t need to trade goods for her game

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