The Lottery Shirley Jackson Essay

Tags: Earliest Memories Childhood EssayWhich Of The Following Reactions Are Metathesis ReactionsHow To Write Topic ProposalEssay Skills Needed Effective TeacherAlbert Einstein Term PapersEssays On Shakespeare'S OthelloResearch Paper Essay ExamplesSusan B Anthony EssayEssay Movement New ReligiousAmerican Revolution Research Paper

It is as if ordinary life had suddenly ceased and were replaced, without warning, without break, and without change of scene, by some horrifying nightmare.

Hence the shock, which the author has very carefully worked up to.

Jackson's fiction is noted for exploring incongruities in everyday life, and "The Lottery," perhaps her most exemplary work in this respect, examines humanity's capacity for evil within a contemporary, familiar, American setting.

Noting that the story's characters, physical environment, and even its climactic action lack significant individuating detail, most critics view "The Lottery" as a modern-day parable or fable which obliquely addresses a variety of themes, including the dark side of human nature, the danger of ritualized behavior, and the potential for cruelty when the individual submits to the mass will.

SOURCE: "On the Morning of June 28, 1948, and 'The Lottery,'" in The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Story Fiction, edited by Ann Charters, St. I was quite casual about it, as I recall—I opened the box, took out a couple of bills and a letter or two, talked to the postmaster for a few minutes, and left,... Most acknowledge the power of the story, admitting that the psychological shock of the ritual murder in an atmosphere of modern, small-town normality... In the following excerpt, she briefly discusses the publication history of "The Lottery" and examines the story's theme of social evil.] One of the ancient practices that modern man deplores as inhumanly evil is the annual sacrifice of a scapegoat or a god-figure for the benefit of the community. Either they are concerned with identifying specific items of folklore in works of literature, or they attempt to interpret the use of folklore as integral to the meaning of particular literary creations. Seymour Lainoff early on invoked the "primitive annual scapegoat rite" discussed in Frazer's The Golden...

SOURCE: "'The Lottery': Symbolic Tour de Force," in American Literature, Vol. SOURCE: "The Short Stories," in Shirley Jackson, Twayne Publishers, 1975, pp. Throughout the ages, from ancient Rome and Greece to the more recent occurrences in African countries, sacrifices in the name of a god of vegetation were usual and necessary, the natives felt, for a fertile crop. SOURCE: "A Folkloristic Look at Shirley Jackson's 'The Lottery,'" in Tennessee Folklore Society Bulletin, Vol. Historically, folklore-in-literature research has been oriented... SOURCE: "An Old Testament Analogue for 'The Lottery,'" in Journal of Modern Literature, Vol. ∗The Road through the Wall (novel) 1948The Lottery; or The Adventures of James Harris (short stories) 1949Hangsaman (novel) 1951Life among the Savages (nonfiction) 1953 †The Bird's Nest (novel) 1954Witchcraft of Salem Village (juvenile fiction) 1956Raising Demons (nonfiction) 1957The Sundial (novel) 1958The Bad Children: A Play in One Act for Bad Children (drama) 1959 ‡The Haunting of Hill House (novel) 1959We Have Always Lived in the Castle (novel) 1962 §The Magic of Jackson (short stories and novels) 1966 §Come along with Me: Part of a Novel, Sixteen Stories, and Three Lectures (short stories, novel, and lectures) 1968 ∗This work was published as The Other Side of the Street in 1956. ‡This novel served as the basis for the film The Haunting (1963), written by Nelson Gidding and directed by Robert Wise. SOURCE: "Shirley Jackson, 'The Lottery': Comment," in Modern Short Stories: A Critical Anthology, edited by Robert B. In the following essay on "The Lottery," Heilman discusses how Jackson's shift "from a realistic to a symbolic technique" intensifies the shock value of the story's ending.] Miss Jackson's story ["The Lottery"] is remarkable for the tremendous shock produced by the ending.Let us ignore the problem of meaning for the moment and see how the shock is created. Up to the last six paragraphs the story is written in the manner of a realistic transcript of small-town experience: the day is a special one, true, but the occasion is familiar, and for the most part the people are presented as going through a well-known routine.Unlike primitive peoples, however, the townspeople in "The Lottery"—insofar as they repre-sent contemporary Western society—should possess social, religious, and moral prohibitions against annual lethal stonings.Commentators variously argue that it is the very ritualization that makes the murder palatable to otherwise decent people; the ritual, and fulfilling its tradition, justifies and masks the brutality.While most critics concede that it was Jackson's intention to avoid specific meaning, some cite flatly drawn characters, unrevealing dialogue, and the shocking ending as evidence of literary infertility.The majority of commentators, though, argue that the story's art lies in its provocativeness and that with its parable-like structure Jackson is able to address a variety of timeless issues with contemporary resonance, and thereby stir her readers to reflective thought and debate. [Heilman is an English professor and the author of several works on drama, comedy, and the humanities.A few slight notes of nervousness, the talk about giving up the tradition, and the emotional outburst by Mrs.Hutchinson all suggest some not entirely happy outcome.Although everyone appears to agree that the annual lottery is important, no one seems to know when it began or what its original purpose was. Summers reads off an alphabetical list of names, the heads of each household come forward to select a folded slip of paper from an old black wooden box.Bill Hutchinson draws the paper with the black mark on it, and people immediately begin speculating about which Hutchinson will actually "win" the drawing.


Comments The Lottery Shirley Jackson Essay

  • The Lottery - Wikipedia

    The Lottery" is a short story written by Shirley Jackson, first published in the June 26, 1948 issue of The New Yorker. It has been described as "one of the most famous short stories in the history of American literature ".…

  • Shirley Jackson "The Lottery" - Argumentative Off-loadings

    In 1948, Shirley Jackson released a short story titled “The Lottery” in the New Yorker. Following the story’s release came a wave of backlash opposing the story’s message. The magazine responsible for its publication received thousands of letters of hate and just as many, if not more, letters retracting subscription.…

  • The Lottery Symbolism - Research Paper

    Essay title The Lottery Symbolism. One of the main symbols of the story is the setting. It takes place in a normal small town on a nice summer day. “The morning of June 27th was clear and sunny, with the fresh warmth of a full summer day; the flowers were blooming profusely and the grass was richly green.”.…

  • The Lottery by Shirley Jackson Research Paper Example.

    The Lottery" by Shirley Jackson Thesis ment The Lottery is written around the theme of the dangers in following traditions blindly and the author uses this theme in a comic and ironic way to state expose a causal vice, hypocrisy, and weakness of the human race. Introduction Good writers are known by the level of impact their stories make to readers.…

  • Literary Analysis "The Lottery by Shirley Jackson Essay.

    Jackson uses the lottery’s conductor Mr. Summers and also Mr. Graves whom oversees the lottery, together to symbolize life versus death, new ideas versus traditional ways. Most simply, Mr. Summers represents the season of which the lottery takes place, June 27th.…

  • Symbolism in Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery'' Essay Example

    Symbolism is a concept the author Shirley Jackson doesn’t seem to take lightly. Her short story “The Lottery” is teeming with objects and concepts that don’t show the reader their true meaning without a little digging.…

  • Irony In “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson Essay

    Irony In “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson Essay In “The Lottery”. Shirley Jackson uses boding. symbolism. and sarcasm throughout her narrative to demo that decease is at hand in the terminal.…

  • Critical Analysis Essay of The Lottery by Shirley Jackson

    Critical Analysis Essay of The Lottery by Shirley Jackson The Lottery, a short story, was written by Shirley Jackson. It was initially published in The New Yorker in its June 26, 1948 issue. The story opens on a clear, sunny summer of June 27 at around ten o’clock in the morning. A festive mood was in the air. The 300 villagers headed towards the square to participate the yearly lottery.…

  • The Symbolism In The Lottery English Literature Essay

    The Symbolism In The Lottery English Literature Essay. Shirley Jacksons, The Lottery, clearly expresses her feelings concerning traditional rituals through her story. It opens the eyes of readers to properly classify and question some of today s traditions as cruel, and allows room to foretell the outcome of these unusual traditions.…

The Latest from ©