The Lottery Research

The Lottery Research - Bonura 1 Josh Bonura Mrs Carey...

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Bonura 1 Josh Bonura Mrs. Carey English 1302 June 24, 2008 The Absence of Compassion Shirley Jackson successfully captures the struggle for survival and the lack of human compassion in “The Lottery. The story displays how mankind can be no better than animals, struggling to look out for themselves and not their brethren. In the story, the Hutchinson’s family is one of the many families that are targeted through a malicious pick and choose system which ultimately turns lover against lover. This way of life is barbaric and crude because they go to such lengths to preserve their backward tradition. Yet they have the courage to change up some of the old ways such as changing out chips for paper to “allow enough room in the black box.” Ultimately mankind displays a miserable failure because of the absence of humanity and compassion which gives humans their morality. Despite the talk from the villagers of how they imply that they dislike the lottery and want to abolish it, they continue to modify and even carry out the killing without pause. For example, Mr. Adams is one of the characters to display the irony of talking about abolishing it because he’s one of the main ones to carry out the malicious act of stoning Mrs. Hutchinson. Mr. Adams states, “that over in the north village they’re talking of giving up the lottery” (791). Mr. Adams implies to the crowd that he wants the tradition to cease and is a prime example of how he is willing to risk his life to get the chance to slay a fellow villager. However, he’s not doing this because he necessarily disagrees with the custom; in fact, he is one of the main ones to carry out the cold-blooded killing. The narrator states, “Steve Adams was in front of the crowd of
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Bonura 2 villagers…” (794). Although Steve Adams speaks out against it; he merely is trying to save himself. A.R. Coulthard points out, “They are willing to risk their own lives by having the sheer pleasure of committing a murder” (65). Steve Adams, along with everyone, has the killing in the back of his mind and he is waiting to unleash death upon the unlucky victim. Many of the villagers throughout the story appear to be against the lottery and see it as if it’s a burden. One example is Mr. Summers the man who organizes the event. He states, “Guess we better get stated, get this over with, so’s we can go back to work” (790). Obviously, Mr. Summers is one of the many characters that view the lottery as just another hassle in his daily life. Also, Old Man
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The Lottery Research - Bonura 1 Josh Bonura Mrs Carey...

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