In the story "The Lottery" by Shirley Jackson, villagers gather together in the center of the town each year for an annual lottery. There is much excitement and interest at the rituals of the event proceeds. The winning family is chosen by ballot, and from that family a winning member, Mrs. Hutchinson is selected. Mrs. Hutchinson, a wife and mother to five children, is then stoned by the villagers, including her family members.
Mrs. Hutchinson is the main female character of the story and she is the last to show for the drawing. She disputes the results of both drawings once completed, and she makes every attempt to lower her chance of winning by drawing her married daughters into her familie's drawing. Mrs. Hutchinson shows a complete lack of inner strength and reveals her cowardice and uncaring relationship as shown in her actions. Mrs. Hutchinson is a perfect example of how evil exists in everyone and when pushed it can take a mother to risk her own child's safety.
Symbolism in the story also supports the theme of "The Lottery". The very names of the characters in the story are laden with meaning. The names of Summers, Graves, Warner, Delacroix and Hutchinson hint at the true nature of the characters. Mrs. Delacroix's name means of the cross in Latin; therefore hinting at Tessie's sacrificial killing. Even tough Mrs. Delacroix seems to be a friend to Mrs. Hutchinson it is she who is shown to pick up the largest rock and promotes other people to stone Tessie. Mr. Summers" name symbolizes life but in reality it is he who is in charge of the lottery which instead of giving life to its winner it gives death. Graves is the man who carries in the black box and the three-legged stool. His name hints to what will happen to Tessie Hutchinson. It is also from Mr. Graves whom the citizens get the papers from, therefore it is almost like he is the one who has the most influence over whose grave it will be next.