Setting is the physical location and time in which a story takes place. To identify setting, we must note the specific details the author provides concerning:
- The story’s location.
- The time in which the action takes place.
- The social environment of the characters, including the manners, customs, and moral values that govern their society.
While we often associate setting with “where” and “when,” it also has an emotional effect and can create a mood or atmosphere. Mood is the feeling that a text conveys to readers. Authors deliberately choose a setting and include specific details to conjure a certain reaction/feeling in their readers. Once I have identified the story’s setting, I can identify the mood by asking:
- What things, thoughts, or feelings do I typically associate these details with?
Setting can best be defined as: The physical location, time, and social environment in which a story takes place.
Mood can be defined as: The emotional effect or feeling that a text conveys to a reader.
QUESTION: What is the setting of “The Lottery?” What mood do these details establish, and what does this lead you to think about the lottery that’s about to occur? Use evidence from the text to support your answer.
Consider the following 2 examples of the process of answering a setting question like the one above:
STEP 1: identify mood
Scenario A : The setting is a decrepit, abandoned, and old building. I feel tense or anxious since I’ve seen many scary movies where something bad happens in these types of locations. Given this, what mood is the author trying to create? If I’m feeling tense or anxious, I think the author is trying to create a mood of suspense or even fear.
Scenario B : The setting is a warm, sunny beach, I feel relaxed. Given this, what mood is the author trying to create? If I’m feeling relaxed, I think the author is trying to create a mood of happiness and calm.
STEP 2: predict events
(back to) Scenario A : I’m thinking something bad is going to happen to our main character. Given this, what do I need to be aware of as I continue reading? I’m going to be on my toes to see what might happen next… there will probably be some more clues about what catastrophe is about to occur.
(back to) Scenario B : I’m thinking that something good or maybe lucky will happen. Given this, what do I need to be aware of as I continue reading? I’m going to look for additional elements that indicate positive events will occur.
“The Lottery” is set in a small, unnamed town on a summer day. The details in the text tell us that:
- It is the morning of June 27th.
- The day is clear and sunny.
- The flowers are blossoming profusely and the grass is green.
- All of the people in the village are gathered in the village square, and they gather here every year for the lottery.
- Because the people are always present for the lottery, it suggests that they place importance on tradition.
- While together, the townspeople seem to be relaxed and happy: the children are playing and laughing, the men are telling jokes, and the women are gossiping.
These setting details help establish a mood of a relaxed excitement because the day is beautiful, all of the townspeople are present, and they seem happy and carefree. Given the warm, sunny day and the sense of happy excitement of the townspeople, it’s likely that the lottery is a fun, community event for the townspeople.
Setting is the physical location and time in which a story takes place. To identify setting, we must note the specific details the author provides concerning: The story’s location. The time in which the action takes place. The social environment of the characters, including the manners, customs, and moral values that govern their society. While…
What is the mood in the beginning of the lottery?
Thereof, at what point does the mood shift in the lottery?
Answer and Explanation: In ‘The Lottery,’ the mood begins as light and cheerful, but shifts to tense and ominous. In the first paragraph, Jackson describes a normal summer
Secondly, what is the atmosphere of the lottery? The atmosphere of the short story “The Lottery” is initially normal and friendly. There is nothing peculiar about the people and how they assemble in the square. The lottery was conducted—as were the square dances, the teen club, the Halloween program—by Mr. Summers.
Then, what is the tone at the beginning of the lottery?
The early tone of Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” is light, fun, and peaceful. Jackson’s opening sentence tells readers that the weather was perfect. The morning of June 27th was clear and sunny, with the fresh warmth of a full-summer day; the flowers were blossoming profusely and the grass was richly green.
What does the lottery symbolize?
The lottery represents any action, behavior, or idea that is passed down from one generation to the next that’s accepted and followed unquestioningly, no matter how illogical, bizarre, or cruel. The lottery has been taking place in the village for as long as anyone can remember.
Shortly after the lottery commences, the peaceful setting seems menacing and ominous. As the lottery gets underway, the mood of the story also becomes anxious and unsettling. When Tessie Hutchinson’s name is called, the mood shifts to dreadful and violent as the community members prepare to stone her to death.