The Lottery Theme Essay

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Citera Propst Jon-Paul Wimer Introduction to Fiction November 2, 2011 The Lottery The Lottery, written in 1948 by Shirley Jackson, is a short story about a small village that holds an annual drawing of the lottery. To most the lottery is perceived as positive if won. In Jackson’s story the winner of the lottery is stoned to death as a sacrifice a good season of crops. The winner of the lottery is more than likely the rest of the village, and the loser being the one who was sacrificed. The Lottery can have multiple themes, but an interesting theme to focus and analyze would be tradition. Old Man Warner, Tessie Hutchinson, and Mr. Summers are characters in this story who express the traditions and customs in The Lottery. Old Man…show more content…
At the beginning of the lottery she was energetic and in a pleasant mood, appearing to have to problem taking part in the day’s events which is evident as soon as she arrived to the lottery. “Mrs. Hutchinson came hurriedly along the path to the square, her sweater thrown over her shoulder and slid into place in the back of the crowd. “Clean forgot what day it was” she said to Mrs. Delacroix, who stood next to he, and they both laughed softly” (4). She began to argue the way the tradition was handled by Mr. Summers and the rest of the villagers when it was her family’s name that was drawn from the box. Showing how quickly and easily someone can be willing to go against tradition given a certain situation. “Tessie Hutchinson Shouted to Mr. Summers, you didn’t give him enough time to take any paper he wanted. I saw you. It wasn’t fair (8)”. When it was Tessie’s families turn to draw from the black box to see which member of the Hutchinson family was going to be sacrificed, knowing that once married her daughter could not draw with her family; she tried to convince Mr. Summers to include her married daughter to lessen her chances of being chosen. “There’s Don and Eva, Mrs. Hutchinson yelled. Make them take their chance. Daughters draw with their Husbands’ families, Tessie, you know that as well as anyone else (8).” The tradition of the lottery was held so strong on the town’s members, even Tessie’s own…show more content…
To the People of the town it was so natural to have a lottery no one ever questioned it even if they did not have a good turnout of crops following that year, they still continued on with the tradition. They never ask why, they just know it is something they have to do. Mr. Warner is one character that does not like to change tradition or put a stop to it at any means, he is set with keeping things exactly the way they are. Mr. Summers holds the town’s tradition but attempts and at times makes slight changes to the lottery that someone with common sense knows there needs to be a change, like using paper in place of wood chips. Tessie appears to go along with the tradition just as any other member of the community. When she is displeased with the results of the lottery she has no hesitation in arguing the way things were done and the rules of the lottery. All these characters play an important role in tradition but each one holds their own value of how important tradition really

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