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The Lottery: Irony and Symbolism
Transcript of The Lottery: Irony and Symbolism
of "The Lottery" Definition of Irony Irony: a literary name referring to how a person, situation, statement, or circumstance is not as it would actually seem. The three most common types of irony are verbal irony, dramatic irony, and cosmic irony. Verbal irony occurs when either the speaker means something totally different than what he is saying or the audience realizes, because of their knowledge of the particular situation to which the speaker is referring, that the opposite of what a character is saying is true. Verbal irony also occurs when a character says something in a joking manner that, in actuality, is true. Dramatic irony occurs when facts are not known to the characters in a work of literature but are known by the audience. What is Symbolism? Symbolism is a form of representing things by using a symbol. Symbolism also can be expressed by using symbolic meanings to a certain object, event, or relationship. Symbols are usually real objects that represent abstract things. Symbolism The Black Box Mr. Summers- The lottery is taking place in the summer. When you think of summer, you think of happiness but Mr. Summers helps kill people.
Mr. Graves- It seems like he should be the one to conduct the lottery, as he is the one who has a name that has a bad connotation. Instead, he just helps Mr. Summers.
Old Man Warner- Warns that if you stop the lottery, it would be stopping tradition and going back to the cave times. Symbolism The Black Dot (on slip) Irony The lottery Irony The village's actions Irony Traditions By: Vinita, Alyssa, Aman, Zindzi In the story, the black box "grew shabbier each year: by now it was no longer completely black but splintered badly along one side to show the original wood color and in some places faded or stained." (Paragraph 5, last sentence). names of characters Irony This represents the reason of tradition of the lottery. Many things had changed about the lottery, including the ritual and the wood chips. Every year, the black box grew shabbier, and the reason of the tradition slowly ebbed away. Old Time Warner says "There's always been a lottery" and that "Nothing but trouble in that(stopping the lottery.)" The box is black because people die in the lottery and black represents death. A Symbol stands for another word or object. For example a dove stands for Peace. The word is from the Greek word symbolism. The black dot is on one slip of paper. The person with the slip is killed.
This represents people who are "marked" in the real world. These "marked" people are people who are entirely innocent, yet discriminated due to race or other reasons. This is exactly like what happens in the lottery, where innocent people are just killed because it is tradition. Black also symbolizes death. That is why the dot is black. The whole idea of a lottery is to win something, and the reader is led to believe that the winner will receive some prize, when in actuality they will be stoned to death by the rest of the villagers. The villagers act very calm upon arriving at the lottery; which makes it seem as if it is just another uneventful day in a small town. Considering the seriousness of the consequences of the lottery, the villagers do not make a big deal about it. Even Tessie's best friend chose the largest boulder to stone her with. It is ironic how many of the original traditions of the lottery, such as the recital and the salute, had long been forgotten. All that the villagers seemed to remember was the ruthless killing of a random person. It also seems strange that they let the equipment for the lottery, the black box, get into such a poor condition if the lottery was so important for them. It would seem that they would get a new box, just like they changed the
tradition of choosing wood chips. Irony Old Man Warner's Thoughts It is ironic how Old Man Warner believes being civilized means to follow tradition, which is to kill people. Because people think it is civilized, they continue to do things like this. He says that if we stop it, we would go to cave times. To us, being civilized would be to stop such lotteries. Symbolism The lottery The lottery symbolizes how death can come at any time. People get chosen and then they are stoned and dead. They don't know their death are coming; it is sudden and we can never know when it is coming.