What is the plot of "The Lottery"?

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Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery" is about life in a seemingly idyllic small town on the morning of June 27th. The townspeople are gathering in the town square for a communal event. Jackson describes the event in such a way as to lead the reader into a sense of security and to elicit feelings of warmth and nostalgia for the simplicity of small-town life. As the story progresses, however, she begins to give the reader the idea that everything is not okay. The townspeople have come together for a "lottery," which sounds exciting but ends up being sinister. As the story progresses and the townspeople gather, they begin to make small talk and discuss the coming event. Children gather stones, men talk of work, women join their husbands—at first everything seems part and parcel of small-town life. However, once a man named Mr. Summers arrives with a black box, things begin to take a turn. People seem wary of the box, even though it is what the "winning" ticket will be drawn from.

After a decent...

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