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The Lottery takes place on a beautiful summer day in a small town. Although the location of the town is never given, it appears to be in a rural community. The story begins as a regular summer day, but has a surprising ending. In the short story "The Lottery" by Shirley Jackson (213-19), there are three symbols Old Man Warner, the black box, and the characters names.

Old Man Warner symbolisms tradition in the story and Shirley Jackson uses him to show how long a lottery has been in around in the village. “Old Man Warner, the only one who seems to recall the seriousness of the occasion, complains that Mr. Summers jokes with everybody” (Griffin 45). The villagers have all lost sight of the true meaning and why the lottery was started. "They do focus, however, on its gruesome rather than its symbolic nature, for they "still remember to use stones" even after they have "forgotten the ritual and lost the original black box." (Griffin 45). This shows that the villagers now do the lottery because it has become a tradition. Although it is not strange for people to lose sight of a meaning or a tradition Shirley Jackson shows how dangerous it can become. In society today there are traditions that have been handed down from generation to generations, but nobody knows the meanings anymore. One example is the African-American tradition of Jumping the Broom. The tradition dates back to before the Civil War, when slaves were not permitted to marry. Couples would jump over a broom in front of family and friends as their way of solidifying their relationship as a married couple. Many people still do the jumping of the broom in their wedding today; however, only a few know the meaning that lies behind it. "Although civilized people may no longer hold lotteries, Jackson's story illustrates that society tendency toward violence and its tendency to hold onto tradition, even meaningless, basic tradition, reveals our need for both ritual and belonging."(Griffin 46). As long as some traditions have been going I see no end to them in future, and as long as a person wants to be associate with a kind of crowd there with will always be some traditions. However, it is best to know the meaning of this ethnicity before a person practice.

In “The Lottery” the black box represents death, and the color of the box itself is a symbol for evil and death. The villagers’ mood changes when they see Mr. Summer coming toward the town square with the black box. Everyone in the township realizes that the box holds life and death for some one in the village, and the time has come once again to stone someone. Over the years the black box grew shabbier each year. The “original wood color” showing along one as well as in the belief that it has been constructed by the first people who settled down to make villages here”( Nebeker 103). Therefore, as time went on “the present box has been made from pieces of the original” (Nebeker 103). The black box has spent one year in Mr. Graves's barn and another year underfoot in the post office and sometimes it was set on a shelf in the Martin grocery store. Also, the box plays on the idea of a coffin holding dead people. One of the persons at the lottery is going to die, and the black box reflects this.

The names of the characters in “The Lottery” are laden with meaning. In Hebrew the name Adam means man. Mr. Graves name represent a grave for the person that gets stone to death. The summer time is when the lottery would take place hint the name Mr. Summers. Shirley Jackson use Old Man Warner name to “warns us about the primordial function of the lottery” (Yarmove 243). Mrs. Delacroix’s name in Latin means of the cross. Although Mrs. Delacroix seems to be a friend to Mrs. Hutchinson it is Mrs. Delacroix who picks up the largest rock and promotes other people to stone Tessie.

Even though there are many hints about the ending, such as the piles of stones and the use of the black box the outcome is still a tragdy. Shirley Jackson uses hints thoughout the story such as the characters names, the black box, and Old Man Warner. The town has conutine a meaningless tradition that causes someone to lose their life in June each year. Therefore, Jackson has help me to realize how important it is to now the meaning a tradition, and not just do the tradition beacause it is what eveybody else is doing.

  • English -

    characters' names

    symbolisms = this is a noun and you need a verb = symbolises
    tradition, (comma)
    generations, = generation to generation (singular)
    society tendency = not noun but verb = society tends
    going, (add comma)
    associate = associated.....crowd, (add comma).....practice = practices

    some one = someone

    showing along one as well as in the belief that it has been constructed by the first people who settled down to make villages here” = this is incomplete and I have no idea how to fix it = along one side?...as well as the belief.....but it is not a complete sentence

    Mr. Graves' name (possessive = ')
    represent = represents (subject is name)
    stone to = stoned to death
    place hint = place, hint (or thus)
    Jackson use = uses...Warner's name...warns = to warn us

    box = box, (add comma)
    tragdy.= tragedy (spelling)
    characters' names (possessive with ')
    conutine = continued (spelling)
    someone to lose HIS/HER life (singuar)
    has helped me.....not now but know the meaning OF a traditin
    beacause = because (spelling)

    With so many errors, it would be a good idea to correct everything and then repost for final proofreading, if you have the time.

    Sra

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