“THE LOTTERY” & The Hunger Games


Naturally, the author had to have been familiar with THE LOTTERY. It has been required reading in American schools for decades–although too few people in small towns and in national athletics competitions take time to see the similarities in their lives.–kas

“The Lottery”-Shirley Jackson

from: http://grahnaplit.blogspot.com/2012/10/the-lottery-shirley-jackson.html

 

      I think it’s obvious that Suzanne Collins, author ofThe Hunger Games, took a few notes from Shirley Jackson’s The Lottery.  If not, the similarities are uncanny.  Both have an annual event that ends in the unjust persecution of innocent man or woman.  The entire town (district) attends this event praying they are not pulled from the “black box”/”reaping bowl”.  However similar, these two stories have one major difference.  While the Hunger Games are a punishment, the lottery is a result of tradition.
  
  “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, 265).   

    The stoning of Mrs. Hutchinson is a direct result of the pointless tradition upheld by this small village.  At no point within the short story is the purpose of the execution presented.  Even as Old Man Warner and Mr. Adams discuss the possibility of the lottery’s ending in the north village, the audience never learns why this village still does/ever participated in it.  At first, it seems as if this village is only sympathetic towards children as one’s name is put into the box at a certain age.  However, the audience quickly learns that not even the children are safe.  The most surprising aspect of this story, for me, stems from the apathetic nature of the citizens as they close in to stone Mrs. Hutchinson to death.  They view the killing as a civil responsibility rather than a moral grievance.

“Just because something is traditional is no reason to do it, of course.” 
― Lemony SnicketThe Blank Book

 
  1. Reading on a Rainy Day: The Lottery by Shirley Jackson (Short 

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    The Lottery by Shirley Jackson (Short Fiction review). Saturday, March 31, 2012. With the Hunger Games hype that engulfed us last week, it was hard to avoid all  

  2. The Hunger Games—Fight for Survival in a Brutal Future « Woman 

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    Mar 14, 2012 – The film, Hunger Games, starring Oscar nominee Jennifer Lawrence, opens  with Shirley Jackson’s seminal short story, The Lottery, will feel a sense of While Jackson’s Lottery conveys this horror in terse quick prose, The  

  3. The Hunger Games – Catholic Education Resource Center

     

     I read Shirley Jackson’s great short story “The Lottery,” and I will confess that Finally, two of the participants in the Hunger Games (they changed the rules a  

  4. Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” — OFFICIAL TRAILER [HD] – YouTube

    Nov 8, 2011 – Uploaded by John Doe

    Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” — OFFICIAL TRAILER [HD] ….The Lottery, by Shirley Jackson (Analysis 

     
  5. Hunger Games | John C. Wright’s Journal

     

    Mar 30, 2012 – The HUNGER GAMES is a mediocre movie which has been hyped to the conceit of HUNGER GAMES is Shirley Jackson’s THE LOTTERY  

  6. and now for something completely different: “the lottery”

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    Mar 29, 2012 – It was written by Shirley Jackson (Dec 14, 1916 – Aug 8, 1965).  TheLottery precedes The Hunger Games (Reprint edition July 3, 2010) by six  

  7. The Lottery: Traditions Impact on Human Behavior – | CPALMS.org

     

    The Lottery: Tradition’s Impact on Human Behavior  to closely read Shirley Jackson’s”The Lottery” and analyze the impact of tradition on human behavior …. Extensions: “The Lottery” can be coupled with an excerpt from The Hunger Games.

  8. Similarities between The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins and the 

    answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20120220110711AAtdy8C

     
     

    Dec 3, 2011 – In both, a corrupt society randomly selects people that must be killed, for no real reason. The Hunger Games I enjoyed because it’s about standing up 

  9. Thematic Comparison: The Lottery & The Hunger Games

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    Apr 3, 2012 – Thematic Comparison: The Lottery & The Hunger Games In “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson and Suzanne Collins’s “The Hunger Games” both  

  10. My Space: The Lottery V.S The Hunger Games

    gumzy3000.blogspot.com/2012/04/lottery-vs-hungergames.html

     
     

    Apr 24, 2012 – The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins and The Lottery By Shirley Jackson both show how humans are drawn to violent traditions and the  

     
    1. Stop, drop, and roll: The Hunger Games vs The Lottery

      manaicwisdom.blogspot.com/2012/04/insert-thematic-comparison.html

       
       

      Apr 24, 2012 – The Hunger Games vs The Lottery. “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson, and the first book of the trilogy “The Hunger Games” by Suzanne Collins,  

    2. [PDF]

      StudySync Lesson Plan The Lottery

       

      SyncTV Premium Lesson on Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” ….. students complete the StudySync Premium Lesson for Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger. Games.

       
      1. Anyone ever read ‘The Lottery’ by Shirley Jackson? – LetsRun.com

        Jun 7, 2012 – 11 posts – ‎5 authors

        The Lottery was written years ago, so I also wondered if Hunger Games writer took inspiration from it. The Lottery was made into a short film  

      2. The Role of Silence in Arbitrary Sacrifice | Academic About pop 

         

        In both Shirley Jackson’s short story The Lottery and Suzanne Collins’s novel TheHunger Games, townspeople participate in traditions involving the arbitrary  

      3. Short Story Spotlight: The Lottery by Shirley Jackson – Presenting 

        presentinglenore.blogspot.com/2011/…/short-story-spotlight-lottery-by.h…

         
         

        Feb 19, 2011 – When I read the Hunger Games I said, “This is just like The Lottery! Shirley jackson writes some excellent SS 🙂 thanks for spotlighting it!

      4. The Hunger Games and Subversion | Picky Girl: I read. I teach. I blog 

         

        Mar 25, 2012 – Karniss of The Hunger Games is an unknowing revolutionary in a  like in other works like Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery,” simply a way of life.

      5. shirley jackson the lottery | Bibliophilopolis

        bibliophilica.wordpress.com/tag/shirleyjackson-the-lottery/

         
         

        Aug 1, 2013 – Tags: a tale of two cities, Charles Dickens, jerry cruncher, paranoia short story, Shirley Jackson, shirley jackson the lottery, the Hunger Games,  

      6. Mood words in “The Lottery” and The Hunger Games – Resources 

         

        Mar 9, 2013 – Students will compare the mood established in “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson and the reaping scene in The Hunger Games by Suzanne  

         
        1. Shirley Jackson | writingwomendotorg

          writingwomen.org/tag/shirleyjackson/

           
           

          I went with my daughters to see The Hunger Games this week.  short story byShirley Jackson called “The Lottery” first published in 1948 in the New Yorker.

        2. Compare And Contrast The Main Characters tessie From The 

           

          Tessie from The Lottery and Katniss from The Hunger Games  Moreover, the Lotteryis a brief history of the American writer Shirley Jackson from 1948.

        3. Movie Review: Hunger Games | Human Events

           

          Mar 25, 2012 – Author Shirley Jackson was doing errands in her Vermont village, stroller, when the germ of her alarming short story “The Lottery” (1948) came into her mind.  I mention this at the beginning of my review of “Hunger Games”  

        4. Lottery by shirley jackson discussion questions answers – free 

          http://www.gobookee.org/lottery-by-shirleyjackson-discussion-questions-ans…

           
           

          Shirley Jackson’s The Lottery Questions for study Mr. Coia … Shirley Jackson’s “The…. DisCussion Questions For the hunGer GAMes. … “The Lottery,” a short  

        5. The Hunger Games and The Lottery – Yet TBD

          yettbd.com/2012/02/23/the-hungergames-and-the-lottery/

           
           

          Feb 23, 2012 – Anticipation for The Hunger Games is building rapidly, so much so that between Shirley Jackson’s short story from 1948 called The Lottery,  

        6. [DOC]

          lottery lesson.doc – daniellertaylor

          daniellertaylor.wikispaces.com/file/view/lottery+lesson.doc

           
           

          The Hunger Games – Lesson – Comparison to The Lottery – Day One …. Teacher needs a printed copy of ‘The Lottery’ by Shirley Jackson to read aloud.

        7. Shirley Jackson’s The Lottery by Paige Levinger on Prezi

          prezi.com/9s7kqgv8baa5/shirleyjacksons-the-lottery/

           
           

          Oct 3, 2013 – helps prepare/assists with Lottery Symbolism Grotesque Images Summary Hunger Games Modern day “The Lottery” Choosing certain people  

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About eslkevin

I am a peace educator who has taken time to teach and work in countries such as the USA, Germany, Japan, Nicaragua, Mexico, the UAE, Kuwait, Oman over the past 4 decades.
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3 Responses to “THE LOTTERY” & The Hunger Games

  1. Jessica says:

    Actually, the tradition in the lottery is to give everyone a great harvest. If you read it again and pay attention to what Old Man Warner said, he was talking about how the villages that stopped the lottery would not be eating well.

    • eslkevin says:

      I actually read it in 1970s when for the first time some textbooks were introducing the text to American youth. However, my mother had read it to me earlier when it was first put in a collection of Short stories by Readers Digest.
      Both my mom and I knew very well that the key idea for writing it had come from someone, Shirley Jackson, who had moved into a small town. Only when you are an outsider coming into a traditional and/or closed community, can you immediately grasp what the author is saying about how quickly traditions and practices get created and make it hard for those outside it to comprehend it. We were like aliens from another planet to these small towns–and the persecutions and abuse of some people for others was obviously unfair and unchristian, but we had not created those traditions. We could only raise the question of WHY DO THIS? WHY PERPETUATE THIS?

    • eslkevin says:

      Naturally, Jessica, the human sacrifices probably started in the time of a famine. It was likely believed that the only way to end the drought, pest and/or famine was to sacrifice to the Gods. However, almost no one onlooking the annual event could really comprehend how nor why the tradition had started. There was probably no longer a drought, nor pest, nor famine in the land. They just kept up tradition for tradition’s sake.

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