The Lottery

Topics: Short story, Shirley Jackson, Human nature Pages: 1 (391 words) Published: February 25, 2009
Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery“, is a story that is filled with a magnitude symbolism in a fairly short story. The author uses it to help her represent human nature in real life as tainted, no matter how pure one thinks of himself or herself, or how pure their environment may seem to be. The story is very effective in raising many questions in the back of a reader’s mind towards the pointless nature of humanity regarding tradition and violence. “The Lottery” clearly expresses Jackson’s feelings concerning mankind’s evil nature hiding behind traditions and rituals. She shows how coldness and lack of compassion in people can exhibit in situations regarding tradition and values. Jackson presents the theme of this short story with a major use of symbolism. Symbolism shows throughout the setting of “The Lottery,” the objects, the peoples actions, and even in the time and the names of the lucky contestants.The setting of the story helps to magnify its impact on the reader because it is set in a small town similar to the one many of us may know of, and that is symbolic of everything that we consider to be right in America. The story begins on a wonderful summer day in a small town. The author describes the day as very joyful but strikes a contrast between the surroundings of the town and the atmosphere of the people gathered in the square. The atmosphere is sober, where the adults “stood together, away from the stones in the corner, and their jokes were quiet and they smiled rather then laughed."(268) This, in just the third paragraph, is a indication through symbolism of the townsfolk’s sober mood that something was amiss. The setting for the lottery also takes place in the same place as the square dances, the teen-age club, and the Halloween program.(268) This unifies our lives with those of the story sense we can relate to those types of events, and is symbolic in showing that even though this dastardly deed happens here that it is still the main place of...
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • The Lottery Essay
  • The Lottery Essay
  • The Lottery Essay
  • Essay about The Lottery
  • The Lottery Essay
  • Essay on The Lottery
  • The Lottery Essay
  • The Lottery Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free