Irony And Scapegoat In Shirley Jackson's The Lottery

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Tradition has a major impact on today’s society, but many years ago, it was a way that people lived to believe and if people did not follow the tradition, they would receive the worst punishment. The Lottery by Shirley Jackson is about an annual lottery, which held in a small town. Every year, the lottery randomly selected a person to be stoned to death, and this practice went on for the past seventy-seven years. By using symbolism, irony, and scapegoat in the story, Jackson shows the reader a violent and corrupted side of humans. Shirley Jackson ironically uses the title to make the reader to think about a big free money that people might receive. On the contrary, the title does not have the same meaning as the reader firstly thinks about. It is about a public tradition in the village that has went on for a long period of time, which is stoning somebody to death. In addition, the author…show more content…
In this story, the community allows somebody to be stoned to death by every year. It is easy for them to accept it when they are not the victim; however, when they become the victim, they will do everything that they can in order to deny the fact that they are the chosen one. In the story, Tessie agrees to do the same thing to everyone else. However, when it comes to her, she blames on Mr. Summers that “You didn’t give him time enough to take any paper he wanted. I saw you. It wasn’t fair!”(Jackson, 377). Nobody needs time to pick out the paper that he or she wants; it is all about whether that person is lucky enough or not. Therefore, Tessie shows the scapegoat side of human in this story. The author is successful on using irony, scapegoat and symbolism to make a perfect short story. He makes the reader to wonder what is coming next and implies many things throughout the story. The author also infers that tradition is part of a society and humans can change their mind and heart just by a blink of an
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