The Lottery Questions and Answers
by Shirley Jackson

The Lottery book cover
Start Your Free Trial

How does the setting contribute to the outcome in "The Lottery"?

Expert Answers info

dalepowell1962 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write130 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and Science

In Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery", the setting shows a stark contrast to what is expected.  Through the few pages of the short story, we have come to think of the town's folks as ordinary, common place, decent people.  The idea that they are going to barbarically take the life of one of their own simply does not fit. In this setting where the conversation has been light hearted chit chat of taxes and getting the dishes finished, the very idea that a stoning and sacrifice of of the town's mothers and wives seems completely out of place.  The setting of a small American town causes a shift in the mind of the reader.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial