Loyalties in “The Lottery” and A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings
Loyalties in “The Lottery” and “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings”
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In both Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” and Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings,” the characters are not loyal to each other, but are very selfish and only loyal to themselves. In “The Lottery,” when Tessie Hutchinson is selected for the lottery, Mrs. Delacroix “selected a stone so large she had to pick it up with both hands.” The story suggests that Mrs. Delacroix and Tessie are friends because they had a conversation when Tessie arrived late to the lottery. Still, Mrs. Delacroix seems almost excited to stone her friend. Someone even gave Tessie’s own son some pebbles to throw at his mother.
In “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings,” the characters are equally disloyal. The village seems to be religious, but the couple locks the angel in a chicken coop and charges admission for people to see him. Although “(t)he most unfortunate invalids on earth came in search of health,” other people came to torment the angel. They burned him with a branding iron and threw things at him. Pelayo and Elisenda, as well as all of the visitors, are loyal to themselves only. The couple made a lot of money from the angel, but then treated very poorly. The sick people who came to see the angel plucked out his feathers to cure themselves.