The Lottery

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Irony of The Setting in The Lottery
The setting set forth by Shirley Jackson in the beginning of The Lottery creates a mood of peacefulness and tranquillity. This setting also creates an image in the mind of the reader, the image of a typical town on a normal summer day. Furthermore, Shirley Jackson uses the setting in The Lottery to foreshadow an ironic ending. First, Shirley Jackson begins The Lottery by establishing the setting. To begin, she tells the reader what time of day and what time of year the story takes place. This is important to get the reader to focus on what a typical day it is in this small town. The time of day is set in the morning and the time of year is early summer. She also describes that school has just recently let out for summer break, letting the reader infer that the time of year is early summer. The setting of the town is described by the author as that of any normal rural community. Furthermore, she describes the grass as "richly green" and that "the flowers were blooming profusely" (196). These descriptions of the surroundings give the reader a serene felling about the town. Also, these descriptions make the reader feel comfortable about the surroundings as if there was nothing wrong in this quaint town. Upon reading the first paragraph, Shirley Jackson describes the town in general. The town is first mentioned in the opening paragraph where she sets the location in the town square. She puts in perspective the location of the square "between the post office and the bank" (196). This visualizes for the reader what a small town this is, since everything seems to be centralized at or near the town square. This is also key in that the town square is the location for the remaining part of the story. The town square is an important location for the setting since the ending of the story will be set in this location. Also, Shirley Jackson creates a comfortable atmosphere while describing the residents of the town. First, she...
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