Satire/Irony in ‘The Lottery’: The Lucky Ticket The use of Satire/Irony within literature establishes situations where the unlikelihood of the occurrence of an event will happen. Jackson’s manipulation of his story, The Lottery, provides an unexpected twist to what one may seem to be a normal subject. Northrop Frye’s The Singing School, suggests that all stories are told in either one of four ways: Comedy, Romance, Tragedy or Satire/Irony (Frye 18). The use of Irony and its conventional associations eludes the reader from interpreting a story as a Romance, but instead give the reader a reversed twist. This use of ironic convention in literary work is seen through Shirley Jackson’s short story, The Lottery; the story of Tessie …show more content…
Mr. Summers, for example is a man that organizes the annual tradition of the village’s lottery. The name “Summers” has strong conventional associations with Frye’s convention of Romance, and is a suitable name for such suitable setting. Furthermore, his physical appearance, too, matches this convention; Jackson describes him “in his clean white shirt and blue jeans, he seemed very proper and important” (Jackson 876). Mr. Summers, the organizer in charge of the lottery, in essence, oversees death. His actions of making the slips of paper for the lottery make him the bringer of death, determining the fate of the next winning candidate of the lottery. “Summers”, a name so fitting of happiness and zenith, ironically becomes the taker of life, which fulfils an ironic literary example of one of Jackson’s characters. The concept of the innocence of children contains the conventional association of Satire/Irony. According to literature, children are perceived to be innocent until exposed to the harsh realities of the world, where their maturity develops and the loss of innocence is achieved. The children in this story, however, appear as regular children in the beginning, with the normal intentions of playtime and fun. Jackson even describes Bobby Martin, a child of the village, stuffing his pocket full of stones with other boys following his example, selecting the smoothest and roundest ones (875).
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“The less there is to justify a traditional custom, the harder it is to get rid of it” (Twain). The Lottery begins during the summer. A small, seemingly normal, town is gathering to throw the annual “Lottery”. In the end, the townspeople—children included—gather around and stone the winner to death, simply because it was tradition. The story reveals how traditions can become outdated and ineffective. “I suppose, I hoped, by setting a particularly brutal ancient rite in the present and in my own village to shock the story's readers with a graphic dramatization of the pointless violence and general inhumanity in their own lives” (Jackson). As humans develop as a race, their practices should develop with them. Shirley Jackson develops the
The story started when people are gathered every end of June for the annual lottery ritual in a small village. All the head of each family are required to grab a slip a slip of paper in the box that is placed in the middle of the village. The in charge of the lottery was Mr. Summer. The conflict occurs when Tessie found out that her husband Bill was the center of the Villager’s attention. There is something on the paper that he picked. Because of that Tessie can’t even accept it and she keep on yelling that it is not fair. She believed that the time given to Bill was not enough to pick the paper that he wanted from Mr. Summer. The entire Hutchinson family, are
The best feeling one can experience is winning a prize. For example, when one wins the lottery, one is excited, however not the lottery in the story “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson. The lottery in this story represents a certain kind of irony known as situational irony. Now, this is not the only example of irony included in this story there are also examples of verbal irony and dramatic irony. In The story “The Lottery” there are countless instances of situational irony, verbal irony, and dramatic irony that presents readers with the barbaric ways of the town and allows readers to have an insight on the town’s issues.
What makes stories special is the ability to portray meaning between the lines. Every author has their own characteristics and spin that they incorporate into each of their pieces. These can include character genre, symbolism, plot structure, and irony. Shirley Jackson writes an ironic story about a small village who partakes in an annual lottery. The village looks forward to this day and moods are always high. However when the reader gets to the end of the short story they are shocked to find the lottery is a drawing for who in the village gets stoned to death. In The Lottery, Jackson surprises her readers by putting an ironic twist at the end of her tale, by filling the story with warming articulation, light hearted characters, but
When writing, authors use various writing techniques and devices to better their story. From onomatopoeia, and similes, to mood and setting, these devices are what make the stories we read astounding. Atmosphere specifically is imperative to a great writing piece as it is prevalent throughout the entire story. From the first three words to the last three words, the reader is focused on the mood they are interpreting from the storyline. In “The Lottery” written by Shirley Jackson, the mood is what makes the story so amazing and helps us understand the theme.
In Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” irony is an underlying theme used throughout the story. The setting is introduced as a “clear and sunny” day, but ends with the brutal death of a housewife (715). The two people who essentially run the town, Mr. Graves and Mr. Summers, also have ironic names. In addition, the characters and the narrator make ironic statements throughout the story.
In the short story, The Lottery, Jackson tells a rich symbolic story of a little village that practiced the art of sacrificing a person annually, to ensure the success of the cultivation of crops. One of the rhetorical devices that was used heavily was the practice of symbolism throughout the short story. Symbolism is the use of symbols to represent ideas and opinions that the author has, and we see a various number of different symbols, be it an object, a name, or possibly even a concept, that can be established, in The Lottery, as the reader tries to make sense of the situation at hand. In The Lottery, Jackson used the name of characters and their actions to symbolize and depict how twisted and hypocritical society is, and also used the objects and the ideas that were practiced in the short story to show the shortcomings of a society that practices outdated and rudimentary traditions that hold no place in a civilized society.
The setting is described as a “clear and sunny… full-summer day” and is described with positive connotations which create the impression that the story will be pleasant and ordinary. However, the story goes on to be far from it. As the story progresses the mood shifts from light-hearted and easy-going to tense and apprehensive. The villagers chuckle nervously amongst themselves and gather together quietly as the lottery commences. Once the names are picked the mood instantly becomes appalling and barbarous. The villagers move on towards Tessie and stone her to death without a second’s hesitation. The quote previously presented represents how ironic the story is overall. “The Lottery” starts off with a beautiful, warm day and ends in the brutal murder of an innocent woman. In the text, we see that “The lottery was conducted--as were the square dances, the teen club, the Halloween program--by Mr. Summers. who had time and energy to devote to civic activities. He was a round-faced, jovial man” (26). Another form of irony in “The Lottery” is Mr. Summers. He is described as a “round-faced, jovial man” and his last name “Summers” makes him seem warm and amiable. Jackson describing him as such adds on to the beginning
Society today sees the lottery as an easy way to win a ginormous amount of cash just by buying a little slip of paper with a combination of numbers. The irony that Shirley Jackson uses in her short story, The Lottery, is used to the extreme by not only the title being ironic, but also within the story. The lottery is seen as a way to gain cash, but the ironic part of the title is that the reader sees it and thinks that the story will be about someone winning a big prize, yet the winner is sentenced to being stoned to death. Within the story, Shirley Jackson writes about how one member of the community ultimately chooses who wins the lottery. Another ironic thing about someone chooses the winner is that one of the communities sons picked his own father to win the lottery. Linda Wagner-Martin analyzes The Lottery and its irony by writing, “Bringing in the small children as she does, from early in the story (they are gathering stones, piling them up where they will be handy, and participating in the ritual as if it were a kind of play), creates a poignance not only for the death of Tessie the mother, but for the sympathy the crowd gives to the youngest Hutchinson, little Dave. Having the child draw his own slip of paper from the box reinforces the normality of the occasion, and thereby adds to Jackson's irony. It is family members, women and children, and fellow residents who are being killed through this orderly, ritualized process. As Jackson herself once wrote, "I hoped, by setting a particularly brutal ancient rite in the present and in my own village, to shock the story's
Robert, governmental funding can be seesaws up and down. I wonder what you meant by public or representative of federal government of several variances. Robert, your statement says in of millions and millions dollars generated by willing citizens. The lottery is a gambling system just like faith. We were allowing the lottery to achieve some success stories but there have been unusual effects. Robert, have you ever research on how the lottery was started and why. The economic issues happen in our government would have the funds not be able to release. The winner or winners have faith trust the system by playing a dollar and a dream. Yes, the sinful nature causes gambling to question our belief and faith.
Many authors use irony to make their writings more diverse, as well as to intensify the literary elements in the story. Shirley Jackson, writer of “The Lottery”, does this in her stories in order to leave the reader in suspense and confusion with her use of situational irony. She also uses dramatic irony to give the story a grotesque twist and to cause the reader more confusion about the characters’ morals. Verbal irony is used to intensify characterization as well as give the reader an insight into the true beliefs of those in the village. The use of irony in all three forms throughout the story adds an intensity to the development of many literary elements throughout the story.
Not everything is as it seems. Would you follow a tradition that you do not know the meaning of but has the potential to kill your friend every year? “The Lottery” by Shirely Jackson a story about an ancient, meaningless tradition still being practiced in the modern times. It proves unsubstantiated traditions are dangerous traditions by using irony, symbolism and foreshadowing. There are many literary devices used throughout the story, and the first of them is irony.
In Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” explained how in a small town, which consist of many people, holds an annual lottery where here all families would come together and pull slips of paper to determine who would get “stoned”. During the lottery the people are gathered where the head of the household is called to come up and receive a slip of paper, that is pulled from a black box which holds a lot of tradition. One of the main characters arrives late to lottery claiming she forgot what day it was, and as the lottery concludes the news spills amongst the town that her husband has the slip with the black dot. As the family argues that the lottery is unfair, the result from the lottery is that the woman of the family gets stoned to death. Shirley Jackson uses irony in the
Originally printed in the June 26, 1948 issue of The New Yorker, Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” brought about controversy from the beginning. Magazine subscriptions were immediately canceled due to the outrage at the brutal underlying message. Mrs. Jackson tore down virtually every institution that American Citizens hold dear to their hearts. Jackson believes we should not just blindly follow authority or blindly partake in any traditions that we may not understand to the full extent. “Any human institution which is allowed to continue unchallenged and unconsidered until it becomes a destructive, rather than a constructive, force in men's lives…” “The Lottery” explicates this in a manner in which you must know the underlying message to
Moments before Tessie Hutchinson was light heartedly talking with a fellow towns member. However an unlucky twist of fate happened and now her friends and family are her executioners. Shirley Jackson incorporates irony in “The Lottery”, which tells the story of a docile town which commits murder.