This time around the Hutchinsons were the family who pulled out the black dot and one of the family members gets the chance to win the lottery (Jackson 1). Although “the lottery” sounds like something everybody wants to win, Shirley Jackson uses symbols, conflict and irony to show otherwise. In literature, a symbol is “a person, place, or thing that represents something often
A symbol is defined as, “...A mark or character used to represent an object or character and have a deeper meaning.” A big symbol that is used in the story is the black box. The black box is placed on a three-legged stool This box is where all the slips of papers containing each family’s last name is placed and ready to be picked. The black box is a symbol of bad luck. At least one of the villagers in this small town will be the one to win the lottery and be stoned to death. Although, the black box is old and worn out, they continue to use the black box and not break the tradition.
In Ursula Le Guin's short story "The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas" the city of Omelas is described as a place made up of a almost perfect society, keep in mind how I said “almost perfect”. A utopian city, Omelas during the Festival of Summer, is characterized by its happiness and perfection. "The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas" presents a challenge of conscience for anyone who chooses to live in Omelas. With the backstory of this joyous and peaceful city comes a sinister consequence in which leaves those who live in the town of Omelas to choose to walk away or live with their barbaric reasoning for peace. Omelas is described by the narrator as the story begins.
To begin with, it is essential to note the use of irony in both short stories. In fact, upon reading the titles, the stories are expected to be joyful rather than end tragically. The reader does not expect such an ending, in either case. In the case of “the Lottery”, the story begins with “the morning of June 27th was clear and sunny, with the fresh warmth of a full-summer day”; the setting appears to be bright and peaceful. Jackson goes on describing the people in the story; they are gathered in groups of families and they all seem to be caring for each other and concerned about one another.
Both stories also contain a gathering of townspeople. In "...Omelas there is music, dance, and special clothing for the festival, whereas in "The Lottery," the women show up "wearing faded house dresses and sweaters." Although Le Guin 's setting seems more festive but all the folks in both stories are coming together for what seems to be entertaining festival. However, I believe the major similarity lies in the shadow of these perfect societies behind all the festivals and happiness there is a dark shadow you notice reading on. The reader is then thrown in when the shocking and ritualistic traditions are given.
"My mind is my own worst enemy. In a way I am perpetually and permanently in a state of rehabilitation. In an attempt to recover from the shock of being born. Some people are too sensitive to withstand that." (O'Neill, 2006, p.81) Sadly, Baby associates Jules addiction with happy times, as opposed to when he attempts to get clean, his psychosis causes him to accuse Baby of breaking things around the house at night, letting a bird inside and being on drugs.
“Clear and sunny, with the fresh warmth of a full-summer clay; the flowers were blossoming profusely, and the grass was richly green.” Although it’s shortly before the traditional ritual of where they implement the most horrible lynch of stoning, the author’s use of word choice makes it seem like nothing is wrong. On the last sentence of the first paragraph, the author provides another example of irony, “the whole lottery took less than two hours, so it could begin at ten o’clock in the morning and still be through in time to allow the villagers to get home for noon dinner.” This quote reveals that the villagers know what will occur during the tradition. They regard stoning as a small incident which cannot delay their daily activities. Food gives up the energy to function our life, but in the short story, the food turns into the catalyst of killing. Blinded by their tradition, their oblivion and ignorance traits censor them to determine right or wrong.
Autumn’s femininity is highlighted by “thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind” (Keats l. 15). Because of personification, both summer and autumn can feel regrets as their lives pass and think about predecessor, spring in this case. Autumn is concerned about the disappearance of its youth: “Where are the songs of spring? Ay, Where are they?” (Keats l. 23), but the author advices it not to be jealous as the season has its own benefits. Personification gives Keats an opportunity to create such discussion with autumn and “remove himself” from the poem as it focuses on season’s traits, not poet’s personality and attitude to the situation.