The Lottery and Other Stories

at the heart of the story is one of the oldest concepts of mankind the notion of the scapegoat what is the ritual of the scapegoat in what way might tessie be considered a scapegoat?

The story lottery

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A Scapegoat, according to a standard dictionary definition, is a person or group that is made to bear blame for others. According to the Old Testament, on the Day of Atonement, a priest would confess all the sins of the Israelites over the head of a goat and then drive it into the wilderness, symbolically bearing their sins away. Tessie is made a scapegoat for the town's yearly lottery. The townspeople are not really sure what exactly the scapegoat is for but they follow the ritual of stoning Tessie anyway. Old Mar Warner makes a vague reference to crops being better but this is never elaborated on.