The Lottery

By:Shirley Jackson- Complied by: Ania Issac


Blind adherence to tradition can cause otherwise ordinary and seemingly "good" individuals to commit heinous acts.

This Implies that ordinary people who have done something continuously are now oblivious to how bad something is they're doing.


In the perplexing short story "The Lottery," Shirley Jackson demonstrates how tradition may cause people to act in heinous ways.

Text Evidence 1

"Some places have already quit the lotteries." Mrs. Adams said

"Nothing but trouble in that," Old man Warner said stoutly.

"Pack of young fools." (Jackson 4)

Explanation: Old Man Warner is older so he's more accustom to the tradition. Here he's saying that to stop the lottery would be bad. He's blinded by the wrong in it because he's done it so long, so he calls other people fools because they think it's a bad idea

Text Evidence 2

"Bill, "he said ,"you draw for the Hutchinson family . You got any other households in the Hutchinsons?"

'There's Don and Eva, " Mrs. Hutchinson yelled. "Make them take their chance!"( Jackson 4)

Explanation: Blinded by the tradition of the town Mrs. Hutchinson sacrifices her daughter and her husband. Instead of being a parent she decides it would be better to give up her daughter and her family then be sacrificed her self.

text Evidence 3

" Tessie Hutchinson was in the center of a cleared space by now and she held her hands out desperately as the villagers moved in on her" It isn't fair," she said. A stone hit the her on the side of her head. Old Man warner was saying, "Come on, come on, everyone." Steve Adams was in front of the crowd of villagers with Mrs. Graves beside him.

"It isn't fair, it isn't right, "Mrs. Hutchinson screamed ,and then they were upon her. (Jackson 5)

Explanation: This quote like the ones before show how the people are blinded by tradition. Basically they just follow the cried. These people are so possessed by this tradition that they would kill one of their own. Not only are they doing it but some are encouraging.

The Lottery Trailer

Here's a video to bring Shirley Jacksons Story to life.


Overall, In the short story "The lottery," Shirley Jackson express's to the readers that blind adherence to tradition can cause otherwise good people to commit terrible acts.