Jacksons labeling of the stones as "stones" rather than weapons was Jacksons continuity of misleading his readers. Bobby Martin had already stuffed his pockets and men were laughing while the mothers gossiped. A typical ordinary day (or so we assumed) in a small town signifies the community
The men of the village gather to speak of planting, rain, tractors, and taxes. The women would follow, as they speak of gossip and small talk. This information reveals the villagers think of the lottery as an everyday occurrence, and they treat it more as a resemblance to a gathering, or possibly even a party, rather than a drawing of someone’s death. Tradition is a cornerstone to small towns, because it’s a way to link families and generations. In this story, it seems as if the villagers do not know much about the lottery’s origin but they try to preserve the tradition nonetheless.
The orderly plot structure allows readers to experience the story as if they were witnessing actual events. The unsettling familiarity of these events suggests to readers that their community, too, may be clinging thoughtlessly to outdated traditions in spite of negative consequences. Because it does not evaluate or explain the savage events of the story, the objective, detached point of view used in "The Lottery" forces readers to ask the question, "why do people often get stuck on outdated traditions in spite of not only negative, but tragic consequences?" Shirley Jackson sets the savage ritual events of her story in a bland, unremarkable setting, suggesting that this disturbing scenario can occur anywhere, and no one in society is excluded. The short story "The Lottery" presents conflict on more than one level.
The title has a positive connotation, but as we read further, we see that that is not the case. Typically, a lottery is something you want to win. It can grant you money, trips, and other prizes; however, the lottery that Shirley Jackson describes in her story is something you want to avoid winning. While the traditional lottery grants someone as the winner, this lottery marks someone as the persecuted. By calling it “the lottery”, Jackson keeps the audience unaware of the story’s true essence.
The head of each household, generally male, walks up to Mr. Summers to select a paper from th... ... middle of paper ... ...ruesome and strictly followed the tradition is. Davy Hutchinson doesn’t seem bothered by the fact that his mother is going to be stoned because he has been prepared for this moment. The Lottery is an amazing work of fiction not only because of its extraordinary twist on the concept of tradition, but for its classic irony and impeccable use of symbolism. The Lottery questions whether or not tradition should be respected for what it is or evolve to suit new generations. When asked the purpose of writing The Lottery, Shirley Jackson responded that the story was "to shock the story's readers with a graphic demonstration of the pointless violence and general inhumanity in their own lives."
The residents of a certain undisclosed town in Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” and the nameless narrator found in O. Henry’s “A Municipal Report” are portrayed with completely different attributes by their respective creators. While Jackson introduces her readers to an “everyday” crowd of neighborly villagers in their preparation for a lottery, O. Henry presents his audience to a man who appears to be emotionally detached from society. Nevertheless, the outward appearances of the characters in these two texts utterly misrepresent who they truly are: the seemingly innocuous lottery in Jackson’s short story is in reality a gruesome gathering for the town’s annual stoning whereas O. Henry’s narrator is not as aloof as he portrays himself to be. Although such extreme contrasts between appearance and reality are understandably confusing — multiple readings of the texts are required for the readers to fully appreciate what is going on in the stories — they ultimately help accentuate the crucial theme of good and evil that is prevalent in both “The Lottery” and “A Municipal Report.” In her short story “The Lottery,” Jackson wastes no time in helping her readers adjust themselves to the unfamiliar world that she has created. Indeed, one of the very first things Jackson does in her narration is to provide her readers with a very detailed depiction of the interactions amongst the town’s children: “[t]he children assembled first, of course.
Both of the short stories are told from a 3rd person perspective—an outsider or townsperson looking into the lives of the protagonists. Rather than allowing the reader to experience the character’s thoughts and feelings, the authors let the stories unfold solely based on their plot development. This allows the reader to be a “fly on the wall,” and join the community in their gossip. Despite what an outsider may see externally, often times if one looks more closely, they will discover the truth. In A Rose for Emily, the townspeople thought that Miss Emily was hiding from society, but after looking more closely, they discover she was hiding the secret death of
in May 48). The lack of details broadens the mystery of the story, and presents the opportunity for the reader to fill in the blanks such as time in place; by allowing the reader ... ... middle of paper ... ...ng the revelation of what the lottery is to be all the more shocking. By using this selective exposition, Jackson effectively creates a mystery in which the reader is free to piece together the snippets of information to make sense of the world of the story, rather than create an imitation of reality by overloading the reader with details. Doing so, demonstrates that the subtlety of writing, can move a story forward as effectively, as bold exposition. Works Cited Jackson, Shirley.
“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.
This means that the narrator is not involved in the story, they do not know the thoughts or the feelings of any of the characters. Instead of telling the readers about the characters inside emotions, they tell them how the lottery unfolds. This point of view keeps the readers from knowing what will happen in the end, the only signs of what the lottery actually is comes from how nervous the villagers are, instead of one knowing their thoughts. Linda Martin states that “Jackson 's brilliance is to convince the reader that the residents of the community are normal, ordinary people; and that the rule that they accept so unquestioningly is no more extreme than other orders that comprise patriarchal law” (Martin). If the story was told from a different point of view, the readers would not be as inclined to read the story, the suspense would be