Of the many intriguing varieties of literary methods used to write most short stories, the author of The Lottery, Shirley Jackson, uses symbolism, allegory and plot to make this story stand out. Of the many literary methods of writing, Jackson used symbolism and allegory to her advantage. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary classifies symbolism as “the particular idea or quality that is expressed by a symbol” and Allegory as “a story in which the characters and events are symbols that stand for ideas about human life or for a political or historical situation”. Jackson also organizes her story with a striking, broad message, which takes the reader by surprise. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary also lists Plot as “a series of events that form the story in a novel, movie, etc.” The combination of these methods assists the reader with the understanding of the story, the meaning, and the significance. Shirley Jackson uses symbolism, allegory, and plot to illustrate a theme of true human nature in The Lottery.
Symbolism plays a significant role, represented in The Lottery by people and objects. For example, the meaning of the black box in the story is deep yet simple. It is important to note here that the box is noted in the story to be aged, neglected and the black paint faded. Due to these characteristics and the hinting that the box was constructed with the remnants of the past vessels represents many things. It is noted in a literary criticism that, as a complete unit, the box represents tradition, one which has been allowed to become cumbersome, meaningless, and indefensible. In addition to this, further sources of symbolism exist in the children’s names. As the realm of symbolism is explored, it is ...
... middle of paper ...
...most seven decades ago, many of the issues still hold true today. Many individuals still take distaste to literature and other media which paints a clear picture of society. Combined, The Lottery is a very simple, yet multifaceted selection of literature with much to offer to society.
Du Bose, Thomas. "The Lottery." Masterplots, Fourth Edition (2010): 1-3. Literary Reference Center Plus. Web. 25 Feb. 2014.
Evans, Robert C. "The Lottery." Short Fiction: A Critical Companion (1997): 112-119. Literary Reference Center Plus. Web. 25 Feb. 2014.
Kirszner, Laurie G., and Stephen R. Mandell. "Symbol, Allegory, and Myth." Compact Literature. Eghth Edition ed. Boston: Wadsworth, 2013. 403-408 415-420. Print.
Nebeker, Helen E. "The Lottery": Symbolic Tour De Force." American Literature 46.1 (1974): 100. Literary Reference Center Plus. Web. 25 Feb. 2014.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Symbolism in “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson For most of us when you think of the word lottery you think of wealth, buying a new home, becoming debt free, and being able to afford things you once only dreamt of buying. Fooled by the positive connotation that comes with the word lottery, readers may be slightly baffled by the way the story “The Lottery”, by Shirley Jackson unfolds. The sun shining brightly along with the flowers blooming can easily portray an uplifting setting. Instead of using the lottery as a positive gamble of monetary gain, the author uses different literary techniques to display the lottery as a wager of life or death.... [tags: Short story, Shirley Jackson, Stoning]
1361 words (3.9 pages)
- Shirley Jackson was an author who used the elements of the short story to write. She adds twist to her stories to hook the reader. In her short story “The Lottery” Jackson uses irony, allegory, foreshadowing, and suspense to make this story interesting for the reader. One of the literary techniques used in “The Lottery’ is irony. Irony is a contrast between two things. For example, the irony in this story is that normal people are capable of great brutality. A lottery is typically thought of as something good because it usually involves winning something valuable such as money or prizes.... [tags: The Lottery, Short story, Shirley Jackson]
1930 words (5.5 pages)
- The Lottery was Shirley Jackson 's most recognized short story. Her story was written with a very bold plot. “ Shirley Jackson wrote of the essentially evil nature of human beings. "The Lottery," tells of a ritual in a typical New England town in which local residents choose one among their number to be sacrificed” this ritual supposedly helps the growth of their crops, and brings fertility to the people(Wanger-Martin). Though there is no actual evidence of ritual making a difference in prosperity.... [tags: The Lottery, Short story, Ritual, Shirley Jackson]
1574 words (4.5 pages)
- The Use of Symbolism in The Lottery by Shirley Jackson In "The Lottery," Shirley Jackson uses symbolism to make us aware of the pointless nature of humanity regarding tradition and violence. The story starts off on a beautiful summer day in a small town. The author describes the day as very euphoric but strikes a contrast between the atmosphere of the town and the atmosphere of the people gathered in the square. The atmosphere is subdued, where the children are "gathered around quietly." The black box is the central theme or idea in the story.... [tags: Lottery Shirley Jackson Essays Papers]
1179 words (3.4 pages)
- Many authors have a particular style that is threaded through all of their work. This is the case with the short stories “The Lottery” and “The Possibility of Evil” by Shirley Jackson. The stories themselves are very different, but there are many common threads between the two. The two stories share a theme, action for the greater good. Both stories have events that the person or people committing the action believe must happen. These actions may harm others, but it is for the betterment of the world in their opinion.... [tags: Short story, Shirley Jackson, The New Yorker]
968 words (2.8 pages)
- According to Anais Nin, a prominent Spanish author, "When we blindly adopt a religion, a political system, a literary dogma, we become automatons. We cease to grow. " Shirley Jackson was born in 1919 in San Francisco, California to Leslie and Geraldine Jackson. She is most well known for her short story titled “The Lottery” which was first published in The New Yorker to overwhelming and mixed reviews. The lottery, as portrayed in the short story, is a religious, annual ceremony in the afternoon of June 27.... [tags: Morality, Irony, Symbolism ]
999 words (2.9 pages)
- Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery”: The use of Symbolism and Themes In Shirley Jackson’s short story “The Lottery”, she demonstrates how a small town uses religious traditions that are cruel and unusual but are part of their culture. Jackson lets us know the time of the lottery at the outset of the story. From the description of the men’s talk of “tractors and taxes” and the depiction of Mr. Summers wearing a “clean white shirt and blue jeans”, we may assume that we are in the twentieth century, making the story’s impact more immediate.... [tags: The Lottery, Short story, The New Yorker]
1838 words (5.3 pages)
- “The lottery in June, corn be heavy soon” (page 25). In Shirley Jackson’s short story, she alludes the events leading up to Tessie’s stoning to the Bible. In turn, proving that through the symbolism of their names, all the townspeople were in on the sacrificial beliefs of “The Lottery”. Traditionally, a child with a name that is that of the bible is classic. In efforts to make the child that much closer with God, parents pull names from His Holy Word. So, it is not ironic but rather conventional that Shirley Jackson chooses to use Mr.... [tags: symbolism, names, bible, stoned, life]
758 words (2.2 pages)
- The Lottery, a gothic short story written by Shirley Jackson, illustrates a fantasy about a small and isolated community that takes part in a sacrificial ritual that can only be described as vile and barbaric. Names of all of the citizens are put in a “black box” and eventually, a person is randomly selected to be stoned to death by their own family and fellow citizens. The reason for stoning, or the beliefs of the citizens, is to ensure there is a good crop yield for the year. Shirley Jackson uses the story to expose the subtle brutality in humanity and the dangers in social insecurities that lead to blind faith and following in traditions and cultures.... [tags: Short story, The Lottery, Stoning]
1330 words (3.8 pages)
- Since the dawn of civilization, humanity has always dealt with the class struggles between dominated classes. At some point in time, one class is always on top or the bottom. Shirley Jackson’s short story, “The Lottery,” takes place in a semi-modern period. As Jay Yarmove points out in “Jackson’s ‘The Lottery '” that, “At no point does the author tell us where the lottery takes place, but we are made aware of several possible indicators” (Yarmove 243). An innocent individual gets an unfortunate fate in an annual lottery of a small village.... [tags: Gender role, Gender, The Lottery, Short story]
969 words (2.8 pages)
- Personal Opinion Essay: Israel Entitled to the Holy Land
- Three Important Conferences Held During WWII with Franklin D. Roosevelt, Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin
- Diabetes, Diagnosis, and Research
- Personal Essay on Dissability: Impact on Family and Society
- Animal Testing Needs to be Stopped
- Genocide in Darfur and Political Turmoil