How do the people in the village feel about the lottery in "The Lottery"?

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The townspeople have mixed reactions to the annual lottery. Some are genuinely excited about it—the children who don't know any better think it's an opportunity to play and talk together. Some of the boys pick up stones and fill their pockets, getting ready for the final part of the ceremony....

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The townspeople have mixed reactions to the annual lottery. Some are genuinely excited about it—the children who don't know any better think it's an opportunity to play and talk together. Some of the boys pick up stones and fill their pockets, getting ready for the final part of the ceremony. They play and talk together as if it's just another social occasion. None of them truly understand the implications of this barbaric tradition.

The adults also do not display much seriousness, until the actual lottery begins. The men gather in one place and the women gather in another, exchanging comments about their daily lives. The men discuss planting crops and taxes; the women gossip. Although they are not as loud and boisterous as the children, the adults smile as they chat; no one is saddened or distraught at the prospect of losing a friend or family member. Mr. Summers teases Tessie for almost missing the lottery; she responds with a joke—"Wouldn't have me leave m'dishes in the sink." The overall atmosphere is light before the ceremony begins.

Rumor has it that some people do not want the lotteries to continue, but this town does not seem to have many dissenters. Mr. Adams remarks that the north village might abolish the lottery. Mrs. Adams adds on that some towns have already abandoned it.

Some people are staunch supporters of the tradition. They revere the ceremony and believe it must continue for the good of the people. Old Man Warner is one of them; he calls the dissenters "crazy fools." He believes i the power of the lottery—"Lottery in June, corn be heavy soon." In his eyes, tradition is most important.

Once the lottery begins, people become more serious. They stop chatting and pay attention to every word spoken by the officials. Yet people still seem to not grasp the gravity of the ritual. "There goes my old man," says Mrs. Delacroix. "We're next," says Mrs. Graves. "Get up there, Bill," urges Mrs. Hutchinson. There's still an excitement, although it's a bit sobered.

Finally, by the end of the lottery, the only one who condemns it is the victim: Tessie Hutchinson. All others follow the ritual, still without true understanding since they're not the winners. "I'll catch up with you," says Mrs. Dunbar. "Come on, come on, everyone," pushes Old Man Warner. The children are ready with the stones, despite Tessie's protests of "It isn't fair, it isn't right."

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In Shirley Jackson's celebrated short story "The Lottery," the citizens of the nondescript town blindly follow tradition by willingly participating in the lottery each year. The townspeople do not question the brutal ritual or protest against it. Even Tessie Hutchinson does not argue against the lottery until her husband chooses the slip of paper with the black spot. Tessie comes across as a forgetful individual, who is primarily concerned about her family's well-being until she becomes the unfortunate scapegoat. For the most part, the citizens seem resigned to the lottery as an essential part of their lives and view it as an indispensable tradition. Despite the fact that the lottery was founded on superstitious beliefs, the townspeople obediently adhere to the violent ritual by gathering in the town square as the head of each household draws a slip of paper from the ominous black box.

There are also outspoken proponents of the lottery like Old Man Warner, who harshly criticizes the progressive northern villages for forgoing the brutal tradition. Even Bill Hutchinson chastises his wife for arguing with Mr. Summers after he draws the slip with the black spot, and Tessie's friend, Mrs. Delacroix, encourages her to be a good sport. Despite the citizens' willingness to participate in the lottery, Jackson illustrates that they fear the violent ritual. At the beginning of the story, the men hesitate to help Mr. Summers stir the papers and keep their distance from the black box. There is certainly an ominous undertone to the ritual that the villagers experience, but they obediently agree to partake in the lottery because they strictly adhere to traditions. Overall, the citizens view the lottery as an indispensable, necessary tradition and willingly participate in the brutal ritual each June.

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Most of the villagers are completely resigned to the fact that the lottery occurs.  It is a part of their normal existence.  They don't question it.  They don't fight it.  The villagers also don't seem to actively support it either.  The lottery is simply something that must be done and endured.  

The only character that I feel is pro lottery is Old Man Warner.  Based on his name, it's clear that he has been around a long time and has seen many lotteries.  He says that there has always been a lottery and sees no reason to discontinue it.  

Old Man Warner snorted. "Pack of crazy fools," he said. "Listening to the young folks, nothing's good enough for them. Next thing you know, they'll be wanting to go back to living in caves, nobody work any more, live hat way for a while. Used to be a saying about 'Lottery in June, corn be heavy soon.' First thing you know, we'd all be eating stewed chickweed and acorns. There's always been a lottery," he added petulantly.

"Some places have already quit lotteries." Mrs. Adams said.

"Nothing but trouble in that," Old Man Warner said stoutly. "Pack of young fools."

Based on the above quote, the reader can infer that Old Man Warner is not only in favor of the lottery, but he also thinks it would be stupid to give up. 

Mr. and Mrs. Adams are probably the most outspoken against the lottery, but their outspokenness is very minimal.  They only make a passing mention to Old Man Warner that other towns have quit the lottery.  I feel that if the Adams were totally in favor of the lottery, they wouldn't have said anything.  I think that they were trying to drop a hint to Old Man Warner about finding a way to stop doing the lottery.  

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