The Lottery

The Lottery

In The Lottery, Jackson uses symbolism to create an allegory within the story to reveal that through traditional modes of action, people in general can accept any kind of behavior, no matter how brutal, inhuman or cruel as long as it is what they are used to. Through symbolism and characterization, Jackson shows how the society she has created has people who either support or oppose the annual lottery.
In the story the black box from which the slips of paper are selected holds a meaning of tradition. There was a story that the present box had been made with some pieces of the box that preceded it, the one that had been constructed when the first people settled down to make a village there (367). Using the same wood from the first box shows how the people in the town hold on to tradition. But at the same time when we are given a description that the black box grew shabbier each year(367), and because the box has gotten worn, the townspeople have suggested making a new box. The suggestion is always made right before or after the lottery but as the year passes the idea is forgotten. This may

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