A Parallel Comparison of “the Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas” and “Lottery”

Topics: Short story, The Lottery, Stoning Pages: 3 (827 words) Published: April 9, 2011
A Parallel Comparison of “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas” and “Lottery” After my extensive reading the information about “Lottery”, I finally can make an analysis and appreciation of “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas” and “Lottery”. The former is Ursula le Guin’s allegory about a Utopian society in which the whole town’s happiness is based on sacrificing one child’s happiness. The latter is a short story about drawing lots; ironically, the winner is also the loser who will be stoned to death.

And I find that the two stories share something in common.

First of all, they are both stories about sacrificing one in order to ensure the happiness of the whole community. To be specific, in a cellar in Omelas a child has been locked in a tiny room and mistreated for a very long time. All the happiness of Omelas is based on its suffering. The people of Omelas accept this as a terrible justice of reality and let the child’s misery go on. Most of the community accepts the fact that one child must suffer for happiness to exist. Likewise in “Lottery”, as for the tradition, it started with a sweet hope. The townsfolk hope God can bless them with a good harvest. For showing their respect for the omnipotent God, they sacrifice a person each year, even in the crude way. That’s why each year a person should be killed to ensure a good harvest. Therefore, from the above, I can conclude that sacrifices are involved in both the two stories.

Secondly, the contrastive methods are both adopted in the stories. In the first section of “Omelas”, the author describes the utopian nature of Omelas: the city of joy which has everything that citizens want—tantalizing orgy, lots of sex, a drug called drooz that provides euphoria without causing addiction, harmony of interpersonal relationship, a jubilant social atmosphere free from interference of human authority. However, in the following part of the story, a dingy room has been demonstrated where the door is locked and there is no...
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