The Lottery is a short fiction written by Shirley Jackson. It is a story about a shocking tradition practiced by the people in certain town. Shirley ironically gives the lottery a bad meaning in her use of the word in this short story. In the story, the lottery is used for public stoning, contrary to what it originally means; winning a lot of money. The story focuses around a village during a ceremony they call the lottery which ensures there is enough rain for their crops. In the story, a number of literary devices are used by the author for example, irony, symbolism, foreshadowing, only to mention but a few.
In the Lottery, there is a hidden message behind the twisted story and the hidden message is how great the horrors of man’s evil could be. In the short story, Shirley uses irony as a function to build the unexpected and shocking ending of her story. In the process of the irony building the shocking and expected twist of the story, it also sets the tone of the people in the story. The people are very reluctant to reject an outdated tradition but the irony used by the author helps to show how this is very normal for the people.
The author uses irony from the beginning of the story. Shirley uses foreshadowing and irony at the beginning of the story by creating a normal and calm town. The author gives a picture of a typical normal town on a summer day which gives the reader no idea of what will happen in the story. She makes sure that the reader gets comfortable about the setting of the story as if there was nothing wrong that was to happen on that day. When one reads the first lines of the story, where it says, “Bobby Martin had already stuffed his pockets with stones” (237). This line is just immediately after the intro...
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...r, the author uses foreshadowing to warn the readers that something bad was bound to happen at the end of the story.
In conclusion, the Lottery is a short story about a town that practices an out dated tradition which they call the lottery. It is a shocking story whereby during the ceremony, a woman is stoned to death with the belief that it will ensure a bountiful harvest. The village depends on tradition until they fail to respect the human life because they stone the woman to death without any mercy.
Jackson, Shirley.The Lottery and Other Stories. New York:Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1992. Print.
Gioia, Dana and Kennedy, X.J. Literature: An Introduction to fiction, poetry, drama, and writing. New York: Pearson Longman Publishing, 2011. Print.
SparkNotes Editors. “SparkNote on The Lottery.” SparkNotes.com. SparkNotes LLC. 2007. Web. 23 Feb. 2014.
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In Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” irony is an underlying theme used throughout the story. The setting is introduced as a “clear and sunny” day, but ends with the brutal death of a housewife (715). The two people who essentially run the town, Mr. Graves and Mr. Summers, also have ironic names. In addition, the characters and the narrator make ironic statements throughout the story.
Have you ever read the story of a princess kissing a frog, having it turn into a prince? Well, what if it didn’t become a prince, but she turned into a frog herself! This is called irony, something we would not expect to happen. In the story of the princess we would not expect that to happen. In the story “The Lottery,” written by Shirley Jackson, we see this situation in another form. She uses irony to bring out the point in her story. “The Lottery,” offers an “ironic twist of fate” that causes wonder and makes one sympathize with the characters.
Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” is a chilling tale of a harsh ritualistic gathering conducted by people of a small village. The word lottery would typically remind someone of a drawing to win a cash prize. A better comparison to the story would be the lottery used to select troops for the Vietnam War; a lottery of death. Another would be the human sacrifices the Aztecs willingly made long ago.
An understanding, of Jackson’s life and times may serve to illuminate motive and meaning, thus yielding further appreciation of this work. Shirley Jackson was born 1919, in the time of the “Lost Generation”. While attending Syracuse University, she met Stanley Edgar Hyman, a classmate, Jewish intellectual numismatist and literary critic whom she married in 1940. With the War’s end in 1946, publication of “the Lottery” in 1948, and her marriage to a Jewish intellectual it seems likely that news of the Holocaust would have influenced her writing. In “The Lottery”, Shirley Jackson describes a situation that aside from time and location mirrors Europe under Nazi authority.
Shirley Jackson wrote many books in her life, but she was well known by people for her story “The Lottery” (Hicks). “The Lottery” was published on June 28, 1948, in the New Yorker magazine (Schilb). The story sets in the morning of June 27th in a small town. The townspeople gather in the square to conduct their annual tradition, the Lottery. The winner of the lottery will stoned to death by the society. Although there is no main character in the story, the story develops within other important elements. There are some important elements of the story that develop the theme of the story: narrator and its point of view, symbolism, and main conflict. The story “The Lottery,” by Shirley Jackson, argues practicing a tradition without understanding the meaning of the practice is meaningless and dangerous.
In Shirley Jackson’s ironic short story The Lottery, the author describes how a superstitious village has a lottery in order to have a good supplement of crops. Throughout the piece, the “Lottery” is depicted as an annual event that characterizes anxiety and skepticism in the village people. Jackson effectively employs the rhetorical devices of character actions and situational irony to show how people conform to society’s expectations or traditions.
"The Lottery" is a short story that shows just how disturbing the human mind can be at times. As the story proceeds it builds the reader up till the end where what you thought was going to happen did not turn out that way. But is that not how our lives are portrayed? Do we not build ourselves up to society believing what they say and do until the matter is put into our hands? Mrs. Hutchinson was a follower of society just like we are. Everyday was the same routine and every year she played the lottery just like all of the other town people. But this year would be a very different year for Mrs. Hutchinson because her chance at the lottery was about to happen. Now as a reader in this day, we would think of the lottery to be a great prize to receive but not during the days of these town people.
In Shirley Jackson’s The Lottery, took place in a small town where villagers were gathered around the town center. The townspeople were waiting for the lottery which took place every year. The heads from each families had to draw a paper from the black box which determine life or death. After the first round no one got the marked paper, so they began a second round between a family who complained there was cheating. When 4 of the 5 members opened up their paper and noticed they weren’t the marked ones, they realized the wife had chosen the marked paper. Quickly, the town gathered around the wife and began stoning her. Shirley Jackson in the short story emphasizes the use of irony with the setting, how the characters are described, and the title The Lottery to make a point to the reader.
Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” is an amazing fiction short story. This story is highly focused on symbolism, imagery, and allegory. These three literary devices are what make this story as successful as it is and what keeps readers interested throughout the story. In fact, this story relies heavily on these three elements
It is strange that rational people are able of barbarity when that barbarity is allowed by the majority or by society. Irony is the element of literature use from the title to the end of the short story “The Lottery” written by Shirley Jackson. When I read the title, I thought about a reward, a prize that someone could win or lost in a bet or a game. I notice that the dramatic point of view and the situational irony contribute to the irony. To create objectivity and move the action forward, the narrator use dramatic point of view. In this sentence “The children had stones already. And someone gave little Davy Hutchinson few pebbles.” (Shirley Jackson 12) creates probably an emotional reaction among reader; even
This is one kind of lottery you wouldn't want to win. “The Lottery” is set in a small farm town in the summer, which is peaceful and the season for growing, but also it is the season for death. In this story Shirley Jackson is a master at creating irony through the setting, her choice of names for the characters, and the situations which the characters have to face.
Author Shirley Jackson obviously does not take symbolism lightly in her short story, “The Lottery”. The story “The Lottery” is a story that never seems to give the full truth and meaning of the objects, characters, and concepts without reading the full story. The theme and symbols in the story “The Lottery” are twisted and not as the reader may think. Three main symbols that are the main plot are the names, the paper, and the little black box.
The title of the story plays a role in how Shirley Jackson used some literary elements to help mask the evils and develop the story. The title “The Lottery” serves as an allegory. When people think of the lottery majority of people associate it with something good like the New York State Lottery where you can win some money. In the story it is used as a way to pick someone to be killed. In the story everyone gathers in the town square and the town’s people draw family names until a black dot is one the slip of paper. Which
“The Lottery” is a story written by Shirley Jackson. By looking at the title you may think about money prize. In this story takes the readers expectation to another level. By the two words of the title there is no way the reader did not get hook to reading this story. In “The Lottery” Shirley Jackson, uses symbolism, irony, and imagery.
The Lottery, by Shirley Jackson is a short story about a community that has a yearly lottery pull. The short story is set in a small town that is seemingly normal at first. Every year the town has a lottery pull, in which one person is chosen at random, to be stoned to death by all of their fellow townsmen. The lottery is a tradition that was started many years ago, and is kept alive by the current residents. By using symbolism, irony, and setting Jackson shows the true darkness within the entirety of the human race.