The Lottery Argumentative Essay

691 Words3 Pages
Throughout centuries, traditions and rituals have had the ability to control one’s behavior. In Shirley Jackson’s, “The Lottery”, she tells the reader of a small village. On the surface, this community may seem relatively normal. However, despite the picturesque appeal, this falsely serene village has a distinct deceitful flaw. On June 27th, every year, a lottery takes place. The purpose of the lottery is to continue the old tradition of sacrificing a scapegoat in order for a harvest. The scapegoat is chosen at random and then stoned to death by his/her companions. Although “The Lottery” reflects an event from the past, Jackson shows that many of the actions of the town resemble the tribulations that ensue in today’s society.
To begin with, like the villagers in the story, our society also partakes in valuing tradition. In the beginning of “The Lottery”, the reader sees characters Bobby and Harry Jones and Dickie Delacroix pick up the stones. A line reads: “Bobby and Harry Jones and Dickie Delacroix – the villagers pronounced his name “Dellacroy” – eventually
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“The Lottery’s” opening lines read: “The morning of June 27th was clear and sunny, with the fresh warmth of a full-summer day; the flowers were blossoming profusely and the grass was richly green.”(Jackson 309). From this line, one can conclude that Jackson is trying to portray the village as a quaint and nice place where townsfolk gather, and no harm occurs. However, this strays far from the truth. As the story continues, the gathering abruptly changes and ultimately leads the townspeople to commit violence and murder. The United States is similar to the town in the story. Although on the surface, humanity seems tranquil with no violence, it is not. Our society is responsible for a majority of violence. To name a few: gang activity, suicide, and gun crimes are among the list of daily
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