The Lottery and the Hunger Games

Topics: The Lottery, Stoning, Death Penalty Pages: 4 (1190 words) Published: October 16, 2014
Stephanie Ventura
English 1102
Reeves 2:00 TR
15 September 2014
The Blinding Power Of Society
Blindly following tradition is something to fear in today's society. Shirley Jackson's short story, “The Lottery,” is an ideal representation of this theme because a citizen of their village is sacrificed each year to be the lottery's “winner,” and that winner is stoned to death. Comparably, in Suzanne Collins' film The Hunger Games, a similar lottery is drawn each year where 24 citizens of Panem must fight to the death to achieve the country's “winner.” The citizens of both the village and Panem have been programmed to understand that this tradition will occur and that it is ethical, when it most certainly is not. The relationship between the two texts is exemplified by the use of suffering as entertainment, arbitrary of mistreatment, as well as unconsciously allowing society to have so much power to a point where it becomes unethical.

The death of another person generally has a negative association with it, however, in “The Lottery” and The Hunger Games, it is abnormally amusing. In “The Lottery,” the lottery itself is considered to be among the other entertaining events in the village. “The Lottery was conducted-- as were the square dances, the teen club, the Halloween program-- by Mr. Summers, who had time and energy to devote to civic activities,” Jackson described (Jackson 1). A human being is stoned to death at each lottery, and it is somehow categorized with square dancing and Halloween. The text implies that the village society thinks of it as another entertaining event because that is all they've ever known, when they are actually being entertained by something appalling. Likewise, in The Hunger Games, the host, Effie Trinket, has a very optimistic attitude towards the game that kills 23 civilians. During the reaping, which is essentially “the lottery” of the Hunger Games, she greets everyone as if it is the best time of the year. She announces in her...
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