The popularity of The Hunger Games has some making assertions that it will replace the Harry Potter series in popularity, others making predictions that archery will become a popular pastime among our youth, and still others speculating that Katniss Everdeen will be the new archetype for today’s generation (recalling images of the Greek Artemis), much as Marilyn Monroe was a couple of decades ago (reminiscent of Aphrodite).
We have our own interpretation.
The female protagonist in The Hunger Games, a young archer, is appealing because she combines personal strength and clarity of mission with recognition that she needs to create a reason for people to want her to survive. For the handful of you who don’t know the story, the protagonist is up against 23 other young people to win a horrible “game”, which means she has to stay alive while the others perish. In order to stay alive she relies on her skills, intuition and strength, but she also needs to convince spectators to help her from afar by sending her gifts (like salve to heal a mortal wound).
To put it in marketing terms, she needs to create a brand. Brands serve many purposes: they provide name recognition, help build positive reputation, and establish goodwill. Brands open doors and make people receptive to listening. So Katniss learns to establish herself as the star in a pack of brutal contenders, while maintaining her humble and caring nature. She becomes a favorite of the elite (who provide her with life-saving gifts) and the non-elite (who rally around her ideals).
There are parallels with another archer: our namesake, the Greek goddess of the wilderness and of fertility, Artemis. We chose Artemis as our symbol for some of the same attributes that Katniss embraces; she represents strength, accuracy, nurturing and protection. As in The Hunger Games, research is often about trying to make sense of a challenging environment. Strength of focus and accuracy in interpretation are critical. Our work is often used to help nurture a growing brand, or to protect an existing one. We love the meaning of our namesake Artemis, and so, despite the gruesome theme of The Hunger Games, we love the modern-day evocation of the virtues that make the image of this archer so strong.