Literary Techniques Used In Shirley Jackson's The Lottery

analytical Essay
707 words
707 words

“The Lottery” is a short story written by Shirley Jackson about a small village that does a lottery that has a bad ending. The story first starts out with all the people waiting by the bank and the post office for The Lottery to start. Once the lottery starts all families must go to the box and select a slip of paper for your family, the Hutchinsons won and had to select another piece of paper for each family member. Tessie Hutchinson picked the slip of paper with the black dot, which meant that she was going to get stone by the rest of the villagers. The topic and theme of the story is that tradition is not enough of a reason to bring harm to someone. Jackson uses tone, situational irony, and symbolism to emphasize the theme of the story. …show more content…

“The people of the village began to gather in the square, between the post office and the bank”(Jackson 25). In this example shows how the people of the village are very nice people until it comes to their tradition of the lottery. Jackson writes,”School was recently over for the summer and the feeling of liberty sat uneasily on most of them”(25). This demonstrates the theme because the people are normal and the children go to school just as normal people would, but they still do the lottery because it is a tradition to them. Jackson also writes,”The black box grew shabbier; by now it was no longer completely black, but splintered badly along one side to show the original wood color, and in some places faded or stained”(27). The tone in this example demonstrates the theme because when the box is described it gives off a bad connotation to the reader when she uses words like “shabbier” or “splintered. The tone given by the people describing the box forebodes that the lottery will lead to a bad …show more content…

Jackson writes,”Bobby Martin had already stuffed his pockets full of stones, and the other boys soon followed his example”(25).This demonstrates the theme because you would expect that the children are collecting the stones just to play with them but in reality the use the stones to kill Tessie Hutchinson at the end of the story.‘“It wasn’t fair,”Tessie said”(Jackson 32). This example demonstrates the theme because it is ironic to a reader who hasn’t read the whole story because they would think Tessie would want to win the lottery and get a reward. The lottery and the children are iron to the reader because they would expect the winner to get a reward and the kids to play with the rocks but that’s not what

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes how shirley jackson's "the lottery" tells the story of a village where tradition is not enough to bring harm to someone.
  • Analyzes how jackson uses tone to lighten or darken how the words are percepted by the reader.
  • Analyzes how jackson uses symbolism to communicate a message through ordinary things and turn them into something meaningful.
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