Compare And Contrast Lamb To The Slaughter And The Lottery

argumentative Essay
984 words
984 words

"Lamb to the Slaughter," by Roald Dahl, was published in September, 1953. and "The Lottery," by Shirley Jackson, was published June, 1948. Although these stories are very different, they both share one common theme. That theme would be violence. In "Lamb to the Slaughter," Mary Maloney kills her husband over the fear of him leaving her. Then she feeds the evidence to the police. In "The Lottery," the entire town participates every year to see who will get stoned to death. A difference in these short stories is the fact that in "Lamb to the Slaughter," she knows that killing her husband is wrong, but she still does it; while in "The Lottery," the whole town believes that it is alright to kill someone like this every year. Although, in both stories, …show more content…

In this essay, the author

  • Compares the themes of "lamb to the slaughter" and "the lottery." in both stories, the violence is horrible if it gets them in trouble or gets themselves killed.
  • Explains that in "the lottery," everyone in the town participates. everyone picks a piece of paper out of the small, beaten up, black box.
  • Compares "lamb to the slaughter" and "the lottery" in that children are brainwashed into believing that what they are doing to others is ok.
  • Analyzes how in "the lottery," no one gets in trouble for killing others. in "lamb to the slaughter," mrs. maloney was not found guilty of the crime, but thought of it as ok.
  • Compares how in "the lottery" no one feels guilt or sadness, or much of anything, towards the person they are murdering.
  • Analyzes how mary maloney in "lamb to the slaughter" would have reacted if she were caught with murder.
  • Concludes that both "the lottery" and "lamb to the slaughter" contain people who do what they want with no consequences that anyone will have to pay for in the future.

Children are even picking up stones to go after and kill the chosen person. "Bobby Martin had already stuffed his pockets full of stones, and the other boys soon followed his example, selecting the smoothest and roundest stones" (Jackson 1). The children are taught at a young age to participate in the tradition of the lottery and they are brainwashed early on into this. People in this town have done this tradition for so long that they do not know that it is wrong. They think that the people who stop the tradition of the lottery are the crazy ones. "That over in the north village they're talking of giving up the lottery." Old Man Warner snorted. "Pack of crazy fools," he said. "Listening to the young folks, nothing's good enough for them" (Jackson 4). These people have been brain washed into believing that what they are doing to their fellow community members is ok. Meanwhile, in "Lamb to the Slaughter;" this story is story starts off with Mary Maloney's husband telling her that he is leaving her. She is in total shock and is extremely confused about how this could have happened. Mary Maloney goes down to the freezer to get a leg of lamb. She sneaks up behind her husband and hits him over the head with the lamb leg, effectively killing him. "She might as well have hit him with a steel bar" (Dahl 2). This is a very extreme way of killing someone; just like in "The Lottery" how there is an extreme method used to kill …show more content…

Mrs. Hutchinson speaks out when Bill Hutchinson is chosen only because he is a family member. If he were not, she wouldn't have cared if he lived or died. When she, herself, is chosen, she gets upset about it and now it is suddenly not fair. "Tessie Hutchinson was in the center of a cleared space by now, and she held her hands out desperately as the villagers moved in on her. "It isn't fair," she said" (Dahl 7). This is most likely how Mary Maloney in "Lamb to the Slaughter" would have reacted if she were caught with murder. She only laughed because she got away with her crime. "And in the other room, Mary Maloney began to laugh" (Jackson 4). She would have been just like Tessie Hutchinson saying "It's not fair" when they haul Mrs. Maloney off to

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