The Meaning Of Individuality In The Lottery By Shirley Jackson

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“The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson is a short story about a village that conducts an annual lottery that brings their community together. Although the beginning of the story is described as a typical day, the ending of the story is violent and gruesome. Everyone in the village participates in the lottery and it is viewed as something sacred. The story begins by Jackson providing specific details about the time and setting of the story. She states “The morning of June 27th was clear and sunny” and that “children are collecting stones.” She also describes that the people in the town meet in between the post office and the bank and draw a sheet of paper from a black box. No one knows why the community performs a lottery, other than the fact that …show more content…
Frankly, Tessie believed that the ritual of the town was unimportant by simply forgetting about the lottery. She did not feel the need to speak out about the lottery because none of it involved her wellbeing. When the time came that Tessie’s life was on the line she finally decided to say something but it was too late. This is where the author tries to convey a message of individuality. Tessie had thoughts of her own, she believed that the lottery was unfair but yet never did anything about it. Instead she blindly followed the crowd, which resulted in her death. Jackson shows a lack of Individuality within the characters. She states “Although the villagers had forgotten the ritual and lost the original black box, they still remembered to use stones.” This shows how the villagers were no longer performing the ritual authentically, instead they were following the words Old Man Warner. The lottery was no longer a ritual but a form of totalitarianism. The villagers were just doing as they were told. They were doing what they thought was a tradition when in actuality was unauthentic.
In “The Lottery” written by Shirley Jackson, famous American poet, many themes are conveyed. Specific events that occur in the story like when the characters are introduced, the boys pick up stones, and Tessie gets stoned to death, Jackson convey various messages. She communicates with readers about reflecting on our actions. She wants us to think critically about our government and what we define as social norms. Individuality and upholding our own morals and values is translated in the

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