May 14 2016
Shirley Jackson’s short story The Lottery is about a tradition that takes place on June 27th. On that morning the kids were finally out of school, they all knew what was going to happen later that day. The lottery was conducted by Mr. Summers, who was carrying a black box. The black box was full of paper which he stirred up and then he began calling up men of the household to grab a paper, one by one. Everyone waited to be called up, and once they were called up they opened up the paper and The Hutchinson family was picked. Now The Hutchinson family had to draw again and see who was chosen, sadly is was the wife mother and wife Tessie Hutchinson who had to be stoned to death.
This short story had a surprise ending. Reading it the first time back in High School, I was shocked at the ending. All I could think was why? What is the purpose for this lottery drawing. Before reading the ending I thought that the lottery and the tradition was to have a new mayor or governing body but I was totally wrong. The little village was not affected by it—to them it was once a year sort of like a holiday. In the text it states that the lottery goes back to when the oldest man in town was born maybe even further but they do not know the whole story to it, except that now they do it every year. This short story may have once been a utopia or to them it could be a utopia but reading it you realize it most certainly is not utopian but in fact dystopian. What makes this short story dystopian is the bad tradition that causes them to believe in exile, everyone knows what is happening and those who are not chose participate willingly while that one unlucky person no longer wants to take part in it. The children are already accustomed to this bad tradition and they too begin to collect rocks to stone a person to death.
This work is similar to The Invisible Child because Dasani was accustomed to her lifestyle of how she was living in a homeless shelter and it did not really seem to bother her. The same goes to the children and adults in the lottery, they were accustomed to the tradition and it did not bother them until they were forced to be killed. The neighborhood that was a few blocks down from where Dasani lived was different than her neighborhood so that was her escape, except in the lottery it says that all the other villages which were bigger also had their own lottery.