Cultural believes and Socioeconomic Status

Gauging Fiscal Stability Based on Socioeconomic Theory

To gauge a person's or a community's fiscal stability, various theories are used. According to personal work experience as well as economic and social status based on income, education, and occupation, various communities have distinct activities that influence economic progress. The book, The Lottery, provides the ideal context to describe the socioeconomic theory. This is the socioeconomic, which can be defined as the measure of progress, stagnation, or regress of the society based on its local, regional, or global economy. In the early 1940s, Shirley Jackson was one of America's top short story authors; she wrote many great short stories including The Haunting of Hill House and We Have Always Lived in the Castle. She died in 1965 of heart failure, but left many great stories to be remembered with, the lottery was no different. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the lottery book, focus on explaining how the cultural believes and the activities of the people in a society can be used to evaluate their socioeconomic status, as well as understand some of the literal devices used in the development of the very book.

The Lottery Draw in the Small Society

The lottery story is developed in a small society with approximately three hundred people. They gather once in a year on June 27 for a lottery draw. In this lottery they call a game, one of the character Tessie Hutchinson the wife to bill Hutchinson tell Mr. Summers, "You didn't give him enough time to take any paper he wanted. I saw you. It wasn't fair!"" "Be a good sport, Mr. Graves replied, they refer this lottery as a sport, however, this is not a sport; it is someone’s life on the line. Blank papers are placed in a box with only one paper with a coal mark. Each head of each family is expected to pick a paper from this black box.

The Execution Process in the Lottery

Usually, none of the family members has an idea of what they might get. After the family chosen heads, mostly the husbands, if not the first-born, picks a paper from the black box, the next step, they identify who picked the paper with a mark. This time it was the Mr. Hutchinson family. The next step is for that family to return that paper with a mark back to the box with other blank papers as per the number of the family member. The Hutchinson family had five members. Therefore, they returned four blank papers with that one paper with a mark. Then the family is expected to pick the papers again from the black box; whoever picks the paper with a black mark from this family is executed by stoning them to death by the village members.

Literary Devices in The Lottery

Through the development of the story, the author used some of the literary devices to develop this story and shared the village economic status at the same time. This device include irony, commonly, when a person mentions the word lottery, what comes to mind is a major winning, and therefore changing one’s life for the better, lottery is associated with winning which intern means having good income therefore progress in the socioeconomic.

Imagery in the Village

However, the irony of the lottery story in this village is that the lottery is conducted to find someone to be killed as the village culture dictate. For more than seventy-seven years, they have been practicing this exercise; they believed in the tradition and held on to it than any other community around them. According to, Mrs. Adams, the other communities dropped the ritual. Some places have already quit lotteries, the Old Man Warner added, "Nothing but trouble in that game, Pack of young fools who keep playing it (Jackson 2005). A community participating in a death lottery, a game that takes a life, is an indication of lack of education, naivety, characteristic for a regress in socioeconomic. According to the story, Tessie Hutchinson was in the center of a cleared space by now, and she held her hands out desperately as the villagers moved in on her. "It isn't fair," she said. A stone hit her on the side of the head (Jackson 2005).

Suspense in the Lottery Draw

In addition to irony, Imagery is one of the literary devices used in the story to describe the village. It is used to show us the beauty of the morning as well as the season and the manner in which the entire village gather around on the lottery day. For example, the mental image drawn in this particular context as the author states that “the flowers were blossoming profusely and the grass was richly green” (Jackson, 2005). The imagery gives us the picture of the residence of the villagers, the beauty in the nature present in this place. However, it also presents people who are idle as well as poor indicated by their dressing and availability to the event that take life. Considering the presence of men and women in this death lottery is a clear picture of idling and lack of occupation, the lack of occupation is presented by the dressing of the women in the lottery event. The women, wearing faded housedresses and sweaters, came shortly after their menfolk (Jackson, 2005). Faded cloths indicates repeated cloths thus, lack of enough money to buy cloths, showing lack of occupation to support themselves financially, that is a presentation of a society stagnation in the socioeconomic.

The Role of Occupation in Socioeconomic

Likewise, suspense is another literary device used in the story. This style is shown during the lottery draw. When the heads of the families pick their papers, the other family member’s listens quietly and eagerly waiting for the results, For example, after Mr. Summers told the people to check their papers, women begin speaking at once, keep asking, “Who is it? Is it Dunbar or Watson?” (Jackson, 2005). Their participation and there keenness to this lottery game despite its negative impact indicates lack of income, and occupation, and the cultural believes that hinders any kind of growth. This is shown by in the book by, Mr. Summers spoke frequently to the villagers about making a new box, but no one liked to upset even as much tradition as was represented by the black box (Jackson 2005). The villagers are so tuned to the tradition that they cannot invite modernity. This lack of growth in terms of knowledge, and new ideas therefore results in socioeconomic regress.

The Importance of Occupation in Socioeconomic Growth

In addition to education, occupation also plays a major role in socioeconomic, occupation is the jobs done based on the skills, experiences or choices. Occupation in a society increases socioeconomic growth while no occupation results in stagnation. In this community, most people do not have occupation. when one of the community women, Mrs. Hutchinson joins the lottery gathering late, she explains to Mrs. Delacroix, forgot what day it was, Thought my old man was out back stacking wood, and then I looked out the window and the kids was gone, and then I remembered it was the twenty- seventh and came a-running (Jackson, 2005). This shows lack of jobs, the husbands only do the housework and being around. This is a clear picture of the regressing socioeconomic.

The Significance of Occupation for Socioeconomic Progress

Nonetheless, there are a few community members with jobs; the presence of occupation in this village symbolizes socioeconomic growth. The presence of industrialization and community services signifies development. The coal mining company in the area signifies work environment therefore employment. Considering occupation as a factor of socioeconomic, the more the occupation the more the socioeconomic growth. One of the community member Mr. Summers, not only is he working in a coal mining company but he is also the owner. When Mr. Summers opens officially the lottery draw, he states that; let us get this over with, so we can go back to work (Jackson, 2005). This proves hard work that in turn reflects a better and progressive socioeconomic.

The Role of Symbolism in Cultural Beliefs

Lastly, symbolism is also a literary device used in the story to expound on cultural and believes that do not conform to modernity. This kind of culture suppresses factors that promote socioeconomics, the use of the three-legged stand for the lottery black box symbolizes respect for the culture and beliefs as this were the ancient sits used by the early generations of our existence. When Mr. Summers arrived in the square, carrying the black wooden box, Mr. Graves, followed him, carrying a three-legged stool, and the stool was put in the center of the square and Mr. Summers set the black box down on it (Jackson, 2005). This deep bond between the community members and the cultural beliefs prevents the change of the living standards of the members in this village.

Socioeconomic and Cultural Beliefs in The Lottery

In conclusion, the subject of socioeconomic is a sensitive subject as it determines the economic change in the society. It is the estimation of the growth of a community can be achieved. However, the story by Shirley Jackson, the lottery is centered on the village with a bigger percent of people who are not well exposed, and lack the primary fundamentals of socioeconomic growth due to the cultural beliefs. This culture is a very big obstacle against socioeconomic growth.

Work cited

Jackson, Shirley. The lottery and other stories. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2005.

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