The Lottery

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The Lottery


The paper intends to highlight the imagery and symbolism of the story “The Lottery” penned down by Shirley Jackson. It also highlights the analytical study of the story and Shirley's depiction of tradition and society in most of the villages.


Shirley Jackson is the popular striking American writer. Shirley wrote great number of fiction and nonfiction that range from the supernatural horror to domestic humor in her work. The Lottery is the impossible genre of Shirley, which contains wide variety of literary terms. The story commences in a small and anonymous town. The day is bright and the people are assembling for the yearly lottery, which seems to be the merry event. The initial characters in the story are the young children, who are busy in collecting piles of stone. On other hand, adults are discussing about crops, taxes and local gossip. The person, who runs the campaign of lottery, is defined as jocund and he starts preparing for the draw. Tessie Hutchinson is a housewife, principal protagonist, who is absolutely pleased to go along with the ceremony until her family is preferred in the first round, but unfortunately on that time she was asked to draw in second turn.

Discussion Analysis

The story is easy to misinterpret, as the story is set in a casual manner. This short story is the allegory that can be understood on many levels of the fable. The casual setting of the occasion that occurs at the ceremony of lottery, which is entertaining in their own way, but also reveals more fine, less open behaviors exist in the real world. The tendency of trapping by tradition is very harmful which is greatly depicted by Shirley in her short story. It should be observed that no one understood the original intention of the lottery but yet followed blindly every year, nor even anyone suggested to discontinue this disastrous trend. In the same way, story is a clear reflection of the pressures of traditionalism (Griffin, 1999). The representation of lottery defines the human tendency to select a scapegoat; an individual can be blamed when things go wrong and punished accordingly. The isolation can even divide families, as Tessie attempts to persuade the community to add her married daughter in the 2nd draw, even though it is contrary to the rules and regulations, and after her selection, her own family members were between those who stone her to death. The scene was so cruel that villagers did not only murder Tessie but they enjoyed the moment of stoning over her. This thing suggests that people find themselves delighted because the selection of other person as the outsider strengthens their beliefs. In the last moments, the principal protagonist did not believe that the selection of this year's lottery is totally wrong and unfair (Griffin, 1999).

The way of choosing the victim was poor in nature, which suggests that people are not safe in such banishment, that any random selection can change someone into an outsider quick manner. The ridiculousness of the ritual ...
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