Tradition And Tradition In Shirley Jackson's The Lottery

926 Words 4 Pages
In “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson present a story that describes the annual lottery that takes place in a small town in the summer. Since the town was founded the lottery has been a part of its tradition. The original purpose of the lottery was to ensure that the town has an exceptional harvest, but the reason has been lost in time. Now the town held its annual lottery just because it has been their “tradition”. The one who draws the black dotted paper from the black box become the winner, who will be later stoned to death. In the short story “The Ones Who Walks Away from Omelas” by Ursula K. LeGuin explains a perfect city (almost like Utopia) where everyone is happy and can do whatever they desire. However, underneath the city, there is …show more content…
Tradition are practices that brings a group of people together to celebrate an event. The family and every single individual plays a significant role in the tradition to ensure the tradition is celebrated the rightway. In “The Lottery” the author writes, “Soon the men began to gather, surveying their own children, speaking of planting and rain, tractors and taxes… the women, wearing faded house dresses and sweater, came shortly after their menfolk” (Jackson). The annual lottery that took place in this small town required that everyone to gather around the town square. Therefore, everyone participated in the lottery regardless of what they were doing, the lottery was their first priority. In “The Ones Who Walks Away from Omelas” Ursula writes, “They all know it is there, all the people of Omelas. Some of them have came to see it, others are content merely to know it is there. They all know that it has to be there” (LeGuin). In Omelas everyone comes to see the child only to contribute to the tradition. They all indirectly participating in the child being tortured and locked away. Therefore, a tradition affects everyone lifestyle and how they live their everyday …show more content…
Since tradition have been passed on from one generation to the next, individual gets the idea that it is normal and there is nothing wrong with it. In “The Lottery” the author writes, “Bobby Martin had already stuffed his pockets full of stones, and the others boys soon followed his example, selecting the smoothest and roundest stones” (Jackson). Everyone including the children participated in the stoning that took place after declaring the winner because they saw nothing wrong with kill another person the worst way the could, by stoning. Children are brainwashed into thinking that the tradition does not affect them negatively and the lottery must take place. In the story “The Ones Who Walks Away from Omelas” Ursula writes, “This is usually explained to children when they are between eight and twelve, whenever they seem capable of understanding; and most of those who come to see the child are young people” (LeGuin). The acceptance of cruel tradition starts at an early age because the adults in the community slowly usher the children into it by showing them how it is not wrong and how it benefits them (even though it does not). Traditions that are passed on from one generation to another must be questioned because the brainwash process starts as early as

Related Documents