Allegory and Satire in The Lottery, by Shirley Jackson Essay

Allegory and Satire in The Lottery, by Shirley Jackson Essay

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Originally printed in the June 26, 1948 issue of The New Yorker, Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” brought about controversy from the beginning. Magazine subscriptions were immediately canceled due to the outrage at the brutal underlying message. Mrs. Jackson tore down virtually every institution that American Citizens hold dear to their hearts. Jackson believes we should not just blindly follow authority or blindly partake in any traditions that we may not understand to the full extent. “Any human institution which is allowed to continue unchallenged and unconsidered until it becomes a destructive, rather than a constructive, force in men's lives…” “The Lottery” explicates this in a manner in which you must know the underlying message to understand the concept that is presented to you. Mrs. Jackson has many insightful remarks in her short story “The Lottery” if you are equipped to understand the underlying message. As with most stories you really cannot take “The Lottery” for just face value. You must delve into the story to unravel Mrs. Jackson’s seemly horrific story. In Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” Mrs. Jackson allegorizes and satires American society, beliefs, tradition, and their innate fear of change through her use of symbolism.
The United States of America was founded on the concept of religious freedom. The first people left their home country to seek religious freedom and to escape the terror of The English Church. To this day “seventy-seven percent of Americans are Christian” (Newport). Jackson directly attacks Christianity with the “three legged stool.” Jackson specifically mentions that the stool has three legs; these three legs are meant to represent The Trinity, The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit, one of ...


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... York Times Book Review. Aug. 28, 1988. GeneralOneFile.
Http://galegroup.com>.
Jackson, Shirley. “The Lottery.” August 23, 2011. Classic Short Stories.
http://www.classicshorts.com/stories/lotry.html.
Judd, Orrin C. "Review of Shirley Jackson's the Lottery." Brothers Judd Good Books and
Recommended Reading. 3 Apr. 2003.
Http://brothersjudd.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/reviews.detail/book_id/396>.
Shmoop Editorial Team. "The Lottery" Shmoop University, Inc., 11 Nov. 2008. Web. 3 May
2012. Http://shmoop.com.
Martin, Gary. “Blind leading the blind.” April 2009. http:/ /www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/67150.html.
Newport, Frank. “This Easter, Smaller Percentage of Americans Are Christian” April 10, 2009.
http://www.gallup.com/poll/117409/easter-smaller-percentage-americans-christian.aspx

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