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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Lottery by Shirley Jackson (from Brave New Worlds, 2nd edition)

From Brave New Worlds, 2nd edition,  
edited by John Joseph Adams
(Note:  This anthology originally appeared a few years ago but has been re-released with new stories as the first edition didn't get publicized well enough.) 
"The Lottery" originally appeared in the New Yorker

Shirley Jackson paints a small town's seemingly charming habits with well-worn customs and mannerisms toward one another, and then she turns the town on its head--at least for the reader.  Undoubtedly, this captured the seemingly random hate of a small town in Jackson's time--the town's willingness to destroy its citizens, no matter how well the citizens knew one another.  While the story may seem more quaint as small towns disappeared, the internet has become its own map of small towns, some of whose citizens sometimes go around stoning.  However unfortunate, this story may never date as long humans exist.

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