Representation in "The Lottery"

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Shirley Jackson's, "The Lottery", is a short story that is filled with a great amount of representation. It's very effective in raising many questions in the back of someone's mind toward the pointless nature of humanity. Without symbolism, the story would amount to a little more than an odd tale about stoning. However, because of what each character represented and the way the setting helped to expand those representations, it became a short story that was anything but short of its meaning. The success of Jackson's symbolism was achieved throughout its characters and objects and showed how the town continued a pointless tradition.

The story related to her life in many ways, it was not a peaceful one. She preferred to stay in her room and write poetry rather than play with other children. She was placed in a mental institute after feeling depressed about college life.

After she was released, she met Stanley Edgar Hyman, a Jewish intellectual, who encouraged her rebellion. He taught her to become a brutal critic who smoked too much, ate too much and use drugs. They moved to a secluded shack in New Hampshire where she concentrated on her writing. The idea for this story came to Jackson while she was pushing her daughter in a stroller on a bright, sunny summer day. Shirley found that it was very easy to write. With a few minor corrections, her thoughts flowed freely and she quickly wrote them down onto paper within one day. The short story was first published in the June 28, 1948 issue of the "New Yorker." Readers' first responses to the story were shock and confusion. They did not hesitate to write back to Jackson insulting letters that explained their anger and frustration. Book lovers' could not...