The Lottery

The Lottery

Shirley Jackson?s ?The Lottery?, raises many questions in the back of a reader?s mind towards the destructive yet blind rituals of mankind. ?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 the short story with the use of symbols and setting. The setting of ?The Lottery? supports the theme. Settings are constructed to help build the mood and foreshadow things to come. In the lottery though, the setting foreshadows exactly the opposite of what is to come. The story begins with a description of a seemingly cheerful environment. Jackson creates a comfortable atmosphere by describing the activities of the residents of the town. She describes children breaking into ?boisterous play and their talk still of the classroom? (310). Men and women are gathered in the center of the town talking about farming and taxes or into gossip. The date of the story is June twenty-seventh which Helen E. Nebeker states in American Literature, has ?symbolic overtones which alerts us to the season of the summer solstice with all its overtones of

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