Parallel Criticism of The Lottery and The United States Army Lottery Draft

Parallel Criticism of The Lottery and The United States Army Lottery Draft

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The fundamental principles of “utilitarianism” is that the moral is worthy of an action that benefits the majority of the population and minimizes the negative consequence of the action, thus the “greatest happiness rationale” rules. This further implies that the welfare of the entire population is more important than the welfare of a sole individual. Shirley Jackson’s, “The Lottery”, and the United States military draft lottery demonstrate two different examples of lottery practices – the stoning in “the Lottery” and the raising of military manpower through the draft lottery. Both of these examples claim the major aim is allegedly for the welfare of the majority, however otherwise. Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” epitomizes communities, America, the world, and the orthodox society in its entirety through utilizing setting and most significantly various representations with her imaginative, enigmatic literary style. The Lottery was written in 1948 and this was approximately three years following the release of a World War II concentration camp Auschwitz. Shirley Jackson illustrates through the setting of the story, a humble, close-knit community, that despite the population’s ignorance to evil, it is still prevailing in the lottery. Lottery in the story pertains to the villagers’ yearly ritual of sacrificing and stoning a member of the community in exchange for a plentiful harvest. The façade of the lottery may appear beneficial for the majority of the villagers because, according to their belief, doing the lottery will provide them with an abundant harvest (Jackson). The sacrifice of one community member may appear justifiable because that one person’s sacrifice is for the good of the entire community. However, if we are going to...

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...eone to do something is not only a violation of his or her rights, but it is also a form of abuse. Government is in control of an abundant amount of power and abuses it by threatening citizens with fines, imprisonment, or the corruption of their reputation. Most of the time, the real goal of a practice or tradition is disguised in the idea of common good. Sadly, most of these practices or traditions are preserved to control, manipulate, and even worse harm individuals.

Works Cited

Jackson, Shirley. “The Lottery.” Classic Short Stories. n.d. Web. 7 Feb. 2011.

Fienberg, Stephen E. “Randomization and Social Affairs: The 1970 Draft Lottery.” Science
171.3968 (1971): 255-261. Print. 1969 Draft Lottery. 24 Mar. 2009. Web. 7 Feb. 2011.

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