"The Lottery"; A Very Symbolic Story.
"The Lottery" is a story that Shirley Jackson uses to express her own views of mankind's evil nature through a tradition such as the lottery performed in this small town. The symbolism is everywhere throughout the story. From the townspeople's names to the black box, the symbolism and irony are depicted throughout each paragraph in the story. .
The setting leads the reader to believe that there is going to be a town meeting between members of the community. The children are with their friends and everything is normal. The names of the townspeople jump out at the reader from the very beginning. Mrs. Delacroix has a very ironic name. Her name means "of the cross" in Latin which refers to the sacrificial death that Tessie Hutchinson gets. Mr. Summers" name symbolizes life or something happy but in the end he is the one that is in control of handing out death to someone. Mr. Graves" is the one who carries the black box and the three-legged stool. His name symbolizes whose "grave" it will be next. Old Man Warner helps to warn the people of following through with the tradition, just as his name hints. Also old men are looked upon to be wise, but Warner is just the opposite of that because of his forceful nature to keep the tradition going. .
Tessie Hutchinson comes into the story as a very good natured person. She "hurriedly slid" into place as if she was going to miss a big show. She jokingly expresses why she is late with the others. As the cards fall, she soon turns to her true nature; one that offers a married child before herself by trying to force her to participate. This is a good example to show that when a person's buttons are pushed in the right way, there true fear and feelings are revealed. .
The black box is very symbolic. The color stands for not only the death that it hands out yearly, but also the sin that comes along with the lottery. Jackson takes one large paragraph to describe the box alone.