Population Control In The Lottery, By Shirley Jackson

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“The Lottery” is a short story written by Shirley Jackson. It is about a group of people who gather around in the middle of town for a deadly lottery that occurs annually. In the lottery family members each receive a paper and the one who has the black dot on their paper is stoned to death. Jackson uses tone, symbols, and theme to illustrate the short story. The tone of the story is peaceful and normal in the beginning suggesting this will be a nice and pleasant story, in paragraph 1 Shirley Jackson writes “The morning of June 27th was clear and sunny, with the fresh warmth of a full summer day.” (Jackson). As the reader is reading this is in the beginning they are most likely going to think that it will be another normal short story where…show more content…
In page 2 paragraph 3 it says, “the population was more than three hundred and likely to keep growing, it was necessary to use something that would fit more easily into the black box.” (Jackson). The reason the lottery was created was to try and maintain population control the best way possible. If the population were to grow any faster, they would run out of food for the whole village. So, to slow down the growth of the population they created the lottery and began hosting it for generations. The fact that the villagers have been doing the tradition for so long they just do it without a thought. So, revisions had to be made because of the increasing population but the villagers didn't like the idea of changing traditions shown in the quote “Mr. Summers spoke frequently to the villagers about making a new box, but no one liked to upset even as much tradition as was represented by the black box.” (page 2 paragraph 1 Jackson). The whole lottery was to keep the whole population under control. Instead of increasing rapidly they want to keep the town under control and be able to have control over the people. One of the main topics in the lottery was keeping up with the traditions. Many people follow the tradition blindly due to what could happen to them for trying to rebel against it. They follow due to the fear of the outcomes and the effects it could have on their families and the opinion that other townspeople will have of them. Many understand how gruesome the tradition is and how barbaric it is but they still continue blindly following. That is one of the themes in the story. But it shows how normal it is for them at the same time. Children are said to be picking up stones and everyone just gathers around for the event. The lottery itself seems perfectly normal until the townspeople begin speaking
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