The Lottery vs. The Rocking-Horse Winner
Liberty University Online
Thesis Statement: While “The Rocking-Horse Winner” and “The Lottery” differs on some levels, both stories carry the theme of death as a sacrifice for greater gain.
a. “The Lottery”: the village needs to uphold a cruel tradition to ensure a bountiful harvest
b. “The Rocking-Horse Winner”: Paul needs to get “lucky” to satisfy the never ending needs of his mothers “unluckiness”
2) Unhealthy Support systems
a. In “The Lottery” many of the villagers unconsciously support the cruel tradition of stoning one of its members for a better harvest
b. In “The Rocking-Horse Winner” ...view middle of the document...
The titles suggest there is a prize to be rewarded and that the stories will have happy endings. In both stories there are two characters that could be considered lucky, yet in order for their families to gain, each of them must lose their lives. While “The Rocking-Horse Winner” and “The Lottery” differ on some levels, both stories carry the same theme of death as a sacrifice for greater gain. great intro
In “The Lottery,” Bill Hutchison is the villager who chooses the slip of paper with a black spot and now has to combine the slips of his family members’ with his to draw the actual “winner”. His wife Tessie Hutchinson is the “winner” and becomes the communal prize for a bountiful harvest. The villagers maintain this tradition in the belief that the harvest will be great and provide well for them over the next year, when the lottery will once again take place. In “The Rocking-Horse Winner,” a mother deems herself unlucky because she and her husband do not make enough money to help keep up appearances. Paul tells his mother that he is lucky and she laughs. Because she associates wealth with luck, she cannot fathom how a young boy could be so. Paul thus begins to “madly” ride his magical horse in hopes to receive an answer the winner on horse races. He is desperate to know which horse will win so that he can satisfy the unpleasant, unspoken whisperings of “there must be more money” in his house (p.235) and to prove his “luck” to his mother. He becomes even more determined after his first attempt at calming the voices (setting up a fund for his mother) only causes the house to proclaim its need louder than before. Good ideas for the details here but need to wrap up the parag with analysis to link back to thesis idea
The transitions in the essay that link one parag to the next should carry the assigned topic and thesis rather than appear to be summary or a listing of ideas. See this site for help
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/transitions/In “The Lottery,” Old Man Warner (who is the oldest man in town) uses the saying “Lottery in June, corn be coming soon” (p.254). The fact that he himself has been in “the lottery” 77 times implies that every harvest before has been plentiful, and therefore the harvest will continue to be plentiful, but only with the sacrifice made by a member of the village. For this cause, the villagers religiously carry on this outdated and heinous tradition. In “The Rocking-Horse Winner,” Paul’s gambling habit is supported by that of Bassett (his gardener) and his Uncle Oscar. Bassett and Paul are partners in the horse races for about a year before they are discovered by his uncle. By then, Bassett has taught Paul all about the races. He even gave Paul his first five shillings to bet with, but he loses it. Paul doesn’t become a winner until he bets with ten shillings given to him by his uncle. Once Paul lets his uncle in on the partnership, he is adamant that his mother know nothing of his “luck”, a...