The Lottery Ticket's Hidden Meaning
In the short story "The Lottery Ticket by Anton Chekhov, a couple which thinks they may have won the lottery fantasize about how to spend the winnings. Chekhov's portrayal of the couple and the depiction of the setting dramatize the theme that some believe that those that find joy in life are lucky, as if they were winners of the state lottery, not masters of their own destiny. Chekhov demonstrates how paralyzing depending on good fortune can be as opposed to striving for growth, happiness, and satisfaction to improve one's lot in life.
Through the characterization of the main character, Ivan, Chekhov sets the tone as he identifies Ivan as a "middle-class man who lived with his family on an income of twelve hundred a year and was very well satisfied with his lot (1). Chekhov proceeds to illustrate how even the possibility of a life transformation can be euphoric demonstrating the irony of how people seemingly content with their lives are actually yearning for a more rewarding life. The anticipation of their lives changing brings enthusiasm to their otherwise predictable and dull life. As Ivan and his wife refrain from seeking the number of the ticket, they share a thrilling adventure filled with heart-thumping excitement as they "began laughing and staring at one another in silence (Chekhov 2). For a brief moment, they share something new, stimulating, and different. This expectation alone is a source of happiness. Though the outcome is not likely, they delight in the mental images of how winning seventy five thousand dollars could transform their lives. Chekhov is demonstrating how the couple believes they are not empowered to initiate such a change through their own achievements. Then as though Ivan's subconscious forces him to see through the illusion that he and his wife have failed to achieve oneness he states, "t