In Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” irony is an underlying theme used throughout the story. Shirley Jackson involves residents in a preparation of following a longstanding traditional process of lottery. However, this proves to be a different type of lottery as the winner gets a different form of present. This is unknown to the reader of the story until when the story is almost over. Residents gather at 10 in the morning in the square that is located between the bank and the post office awaiting the arrival of Mr. Summers and Mr. Graves who conducts the lottery. These residents are very determined to carry out the lottery despite the fact that the reasons for the lottery tradition are fading away and thus loosing their importance and
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In the short story, the author states that the “school was recently over for summer” she continues and says “Bobby Martin has already stuffed his pockets full of stones, and the other boys soon followed his example, selecting the smoothest and the roundest stones” in this quotation, a reader is likely to think that the stones were used in a type of game played by the boys that has not been described. However, it’s ironic that in the end of the story the reader realizes that the stones are meant for the ritual killing of the randomly selected resident.
Another evident theme of irony in his story is in a critical analysis of the town. The town is located between the post bank shows that it’s very small due to the aspect of centralization of buildings and activities. The town is fundamental as the most of the story take place here. However, the town is unusual. First, the author fails to point out other major buildings that are present in every town such as the church or the courthouse. Second, it’s abnormal for these residents to celebrate the Halloween and not either Christmas or the Easter holidays that are the most celebrated holidays by normal residents in different areas. Lastly, the author sets the time to be in the mid morning, this is a hint of the ironic ending of the story as many criminal activities take place during night time.
The black box may look normal but it’s ironic as it symbolizes an act of immorality to the residents. This is true