At the beginning of the plot, we learn about our first symbol, which is the lottery itself. It represents the wicked traditions within the village and how it’s people don’t feel any moral revulsion. It’s also a symbol of the violence within a human being. That it is apart from natural or nature’s will for a human to behave violently. Old man Warner believes the lottery should continue though other places have stopped with this action. I believe the author’s message within her symbols is when mankind is stuck in a dilemma it causes them to react irrationally.
The symbol also presents a psychological approach to the human mind. Are humans born evil or does society cause humans to act out evil? Many believe society causes humans to act out violently and it is not our genes. This symbol is an example to back this theory up. Generations grew up with a lottery not knowing better, therefore they saw no problem with killing a fellow villager.
Maybe this is why none of the people of the village lack or shows no remorse towards the victims.
Within in the plot we are presented with another symbol. The black box plays a strong role within the lottery and the story. It contains all the names of the villagers who are to be stoned. Yet the box holds all the names of the villagers making it that no one is safe from the lottery. The box represents ceremonial religious boxes.
The black box is placed on a three-legged stool. Many believe the stool acts as a symbol of the religious trios. The religious trios are the Trinity and the Three Fates. I think the black box is God like within the story.
God knows all the names of his children making no one safe from death. Like, God, the black box has the power to pick who lives or who dies. Therefore, the box is seen a high power or a decider of fate and the stool is the thread of life like the Three Fates. Another example, of symbolism within the story is the stones. Stoning is a method of conducting a slow and painful death. Making the stones symbolize the deep-rooted cruelty of humans. We see this at play when Tessie Hutchinson’s friend Mrs. Delacroix turns on her after her name is drawn. Mrs. Delacroix picks up the biggest stone to start the stoning. The people of the village are so lost in the tradition, that they lose their senses as human beings and act animal like.
We also see the white pieces of paper representing equality. That all villagers are presented the same fate. Though Tessie argues this idea for her husband’s life she begins to protest. But like the other villagers, her husband must follow the rules of the lottery. One villager reminds Tessie of this idea and how all gamble their lives ever June. The slips do not protect anyone, no one is safe or excused under any circumstances. I believe the author tied equality in her story to show that everyone dies no matter your age, ethnicity, gender, etc.