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In "The Lottery," in what sense is the story’s title ironic?

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anlia | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 10, 2009 at 2:26 PM via web

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In "The Lottery," in what sense is the story’s title ironic?

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mshurn | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 10, 2009 at 4:28 PM (Answer #1)

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The title is one of situational irony as it develops in the story. The term "lottery" suggests an opportunity to win something of value, a nice prize or perhaps a large amount of money. The odds of winning a lottery are very small because many people usually participate, but for the lucky winner, the pay-off is very nice indeed. In this story, however, the irony lies in the fact that the person who "wins" the lottery loses his or her life in an especially terrible way. As we slowly begin to realize what the lottery is really all about, the horror of the story grows until its final savage conclusion.

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obwhite | Student , College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 17, 2009 at 5:53 AM (Answer #2)

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the title of this story is ironic because when we see a lottery now days we imagine that if we win then we get something for winning. in the story when someone wins the lottery it is not something that is good and being happy for. In the story the poor lady get stoned, which is something that wouldnt be liked by most people. we expect to win something in a lottery that makes us happy not to hurt us.

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