The Lottery Essay

Topics: Gender, Discrimination, Family Pages: 2 (542 words) Published: October 11, 2012
“The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson is a story about a small town that gathered and did their usual lottery that happens during the 27th of June. This lottery is being headed by the “Big three” namely Mr. Summers, Mr. Graves & Mr. Martin. The story describes what happens during the tradition of the town wherein they eliminate the worst worker in their town every year.

The story has many themes; one of these themes is sexism. Sexism is defined as the discrimination based on gender especially discrimination against women. Sexism was present in a lot of parts in the story especially against the women. During the duration of the story, we can observe that the men played a bigger role in their society compared to that of the women. The women were outshined by the men in many ways though it wasn’t stated directly in the story.

One instance was shown men Tessie came in late, Tessie mentioned that she came in late since she was busy doing household chores. Earlier in the story, before the lottery was conducted, men were busy talking about taxes and their jobs. Therefore we can conclude that during this time, women were still not allowed to work outside the house and were only tasked to do simple household chores while men the only ones earning a living for the family. This shows that the men already saw the women as simple and ordinary people who could not handle big jobs.

Sexism was also shown by the Dunbar family. When the lottery started, only the head of the family was allowed to get the strips of paper from the black box. During the absence of the father or the head of the family, the son of couple who was at least 16 years old was the one tasked to pick the strip of paper from the box, if the couple did not have any son of that age, then that was the only time the wife could draw a piece of paper from the box. In short, the wife was only the “last resort” once the draw started.

Other small details such as only boys picking stones, women going...
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