Compare and Contrast Essay

1047 Words Sep 11th, 2014 5 Pages
Compare and Contrast
“Young Goodman Brown” and “The Lottery”
By: Melissa A. Reeves
Professor Andrew Smith
ENGL 102-B46 LUO
Thesis Statement
The stories “The Lottery” and “Young Goodman Brown” both appear to show that human behavior and judgment can be flawed, even if the person’s intentions appear good to them. There is a level of fear and underlying evil in Puritan settings in both stories.
I. Introduction/Statement of Thesis
II. Themes and Author’s Purpose A. The Lottery i. Just because something has always been done, does not make it right or just; following the crowd can be dangerously wrong and evil. ii. The author shows through symbolism and storytelling that people can be easily influenced
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The theme of the story “The Lottery” is blind acceptance of something just because it is considered tradition. In Jackson’s “The Lottery”, symbols are utilized to help show the theme. The name of the story, “The Lottery”, itself is a symbol. The term lottery can be viewed, by most, as a good thing, a hope in winning, but winning the lottery takes on a very different, very dark meaning in Jackson’s story. Also, the names of the characters are symbols as well. For example, Graves is a name that would portray death and Summers is a bright and cheerful name. Also, the name Old Man Warner would show tradition. Next, is the use of the black box and the black dot on the paper. The color black is showing darkness, evil, and death. The tradition of the black box is a symbol, in the fact that it is worn and faded, but still used by the villagers. Shirley Jackson conveys the theme very clearly through the use of symbols. In the end, the villagers are shown to be evil and murderous just because of tradition. The villagers do not seem to have a problem with murdering others within the lottery because it is what they have always done and no one is going to declare that what they are doing is wrong. This shows the reader that following blindly can have dangerous consequences. The theme of “Young Brown Goodman” is that the main character is basing his beliefs and faith on what others in his life believe or have faith in. The theme of “Young Goodman

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