Tradition In 'Totem And The Lottery'

681 Words3 Pages
Both, “Totem” and “The Lottery” are heavy examples of conformity, the importance of tradition and how tradition blinds people. These story's take place in the 20th century but have very different beliefs about tradition. In each story their symbolism theme and irony are greatly influenced by conformity and tradition. In both stories they have strong symbols of tradition that have different characteristics. In the stories they have objects that symbolize their tradition. In “Totem” the totem pole represents the traditions of the first nations and their people as well. In “The Lottery” the black box represents the tradition of the lottery that the townspeople follow. In these stories both objects are hidden and ignored. When the black box…show more content…
In the beginning of both stories it starts out “clear and sunny, with the fresh warmth of a full-summer day” (43), this was how “The Lottery” started out; this was meant to throw the reader off and to make them think that this would be a happy peaceful day. As it turns out, it becomes the worst day of the year for the town. In “Totem” they start out on an average day in the the museum. The director of the museum thinks that removing the totem pole will be easy, but it turns into a task that makes it very hard for the staff to complete. In each story they use situational irony. In both stories they take an unexpected turn and become something quite unusual. In “Totem” they keep cutting down the totem pole even though it always grows back. In “The Lottery” when they started everyone was happy and cheerful to attend but, then it turns into a blood bath. When people normally think of lotteries they associate it with a reward such as money or an idea of high value. In this lottery the prize was a persons life. When they call it a lottery they throw the reader off, because they think that it is a good thing. In both stories they use calm environments to hide the true nature of the
Open Document