Religious and Traditional Symbols in the Lottery by Shirley Jackson Essay

Religious and Traditional Symbols in the Lottery by Shirley Jackson Essay

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Religious and Traditional Symbols in the Lottery


Religious groups encourage and enforce conformity of their social norms and beliefs upon their members. Religious traditions are usually passed on from parent to child at an early age. In “The Lottery,” Shirley Jackson reveals the tradition of the lottery and how all of the villagers conform to the ritual of a human sacrifice. Growing up with an exceptionally religious father I can relate to way of thinking of the villagers that traditions are accepted without questioning.

In “The lottery,” the children were stuffing their pockets with stones before all of the parents had arrived, “ Bobby Martin had already stuffed his pockets full of stones, and the other boys soon followed his example, selecting the smoothest and roundest stones” ( 529). This illustrates that the children were taught what to do in the event of the lottery and by being prepared it shows that they were keen to please their parents.

My father had always pressured me to follow his religious beliefs and traditions. At first I was eager to attend his church sermons and Sunday school because it made me fell like I was pleasing my father and he would reward me with praise and ice creams on the drive home. But as I got older I started to realize that certain rules and regulations of the church were unnecessary and some were even ludicrous. For example, at the age of twelve my father had announced that we would discard our television because the church th...

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