the lottery  What do you make of Old Man Waener's saying:Lottery in June, corn be heavy soon?    

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kplhardison's profile pic

Karen P.L. Hardison | College Teacher | eNotes Employee

Posted on

The character and quote rather clumsily tell (1) Jackson's attitude toward the events of the story, as she uses the old man to satirically disparage the lottery she is fabricating and the idea of blind adherence to tradition or belief that the story symbolizes. They also rather clumsily give (2) the explanation of the mysterious ritual the reader interrupts with no insight into the reason or function of the ritual. The quote explains it is a harvest ritual to some god or superstition that is meant to insure a rich harvest for the villagers.

mwestwood's profile pic

mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Old Man Warner represents those stodgy people who are so firmly entrenched in the concept of "This is what we have always done" as having some traditional value.  Recalcitrant and backward, he follows tradition no matter how cruel or idiotic it is.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

I agree with Post #2.  This quote is telling us where the whole idea of the lottery came from in the first place.

One of the points of the story is that people will continue to follow a tradition even when it has lost its relevance.  This is what this quote tells us.  The lottery was once meant as a sacrifice to ensure good crops, but it no longer serves this function.  Now, it is only done because people are blindly following tradition.

accessteacher's profile pic

accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Just to respond to your last point, this saying that Old Man Warner gives us clearly links the barbaric ending of the story to an ancient fertility ritual whereby the sacrifice of one of the lives of the villagers and the blood that is shed is meant to appease Nature to ensure good crops.

sabrinachan's profile pic

sabrinachan | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

I agree with Post #2.  This quote is telling us where the whole idea of the lottery came from in the first place.

One of the points of the story is that people will continue to follow a tradition even when it has lost its relevance.  This is what this quote tells us.  The lottery was once meant as a sacrifice to ensure good crops, but it no longer serves this function.  Now, it is only done because people are blindly following tradition.

Thanks for your respond.

sabrinachan's profile pic

sabrinachan | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

Just to respond to your last point, this saying that Old Man Warner gives us clearly links the barbaric ending of the story to an ancient fertility ritual whereby the sacrifice of one of the lives of the villagers and the blood that is shed is meant to appease Nature to ensure good crops.

Thx very much.

 

 

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