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The Lottery

The Lottery


by Shirley Jackson

Analysis: Writing Style

Clinical, Journalistic

The very first sentence of the text clues us in: "The morning of June 27th was clear and sunny, with the fresh warmth of a full-summer day; the flowers were blossoming profusely and the grass was richly green." The style appears totally barebones, without any overt emotion – no pleasure or kindness or regret. In this regard, it might be said to mirror the attitude of the villagers themselves, who for the most part see the lottery as a naturalized way of life, no more worthy of emotion than the flowers or the grass. The villagers express no overt sympathy for Tess, and neither does the story's narration. To us, this only serves to increase the horror of "The Lottery".

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