Old Man Warner is a character in Shirley Jackson’s short story “The Lottery”. He is an elderly man who has lived in the town for many years and is one of the few people who still participates in the lottery.
Old Man Warner is a very superstitious person and believes that the lottery is necessary in order to prevent bad luck from happening. He is also extremely stubborn and resistant to change, which is why he continues to participate in the lottery even after it has become clear that it is no longer a fair or just system.
The Lottery is a central part of Old Man Warner’s life and culture, and he does not want to eliminate it. He has been in the lottery 77 times before and intends to continue his family’s long tradition. When Mr. Adams informed him that the North village wanted to abandon the lottery, Old Man Warner opined that they were crazy fools.
He says that the young people are no good and don’t know how to follow tradition. When Mr. Adams tells him that in some places they’ve stopped having lotteries, Old Man Warner doesn’t believe it. He says that he will live to see the lottery stopped because of all the newfangled ideas. In the end, Old Man Warner is proven wrong when his own community decides to give up the lottery.
Mr. Warner believes that the new generation is entirely responsible for messing up tradition and he doesn’t approve. Furthermore, he claims that they can’t initiate change because ‘there’s always been a lottery.’ The story illustrates how traditions can evolve over time, but it also demonstrates how hesitant older members of society are to release old customs.
Traditions are passed down from generation to generation and sometimes they can be outdated or no longer make sense, but it’s hard to break away from them. In The Lottery, Shirley Jackson shows how a tradition that has become violent and deadly is still continued because it’s what has always been done. Even though the consequences are clear, the people still cling to the lottery because it’s tradition.
Old Man Warner is a character who represents this idea of clinging to tradition even when it’s no longer beneficial. He’s one of the oldest residents in the town and he’s seen the lottery happen for many years. At this point, the lottery has become a deadly game where one person is chosen to be stoned to death by the rest of the town. But Old Man Warner still takes part in it because it’s what he’s always done.
He doesn’t want to see the tradition change and he gets angry when people suggest that it should. In his mind, the lottery is a good thing because it’s always been done. Even though it no longer makes sense and is incredibly harmful, he still clings to it because it’s familiar.
Old Man Warner represents how traditions can become harmful when they’re no longer beneficial. He also shows how difficult it can be to break away from them, even when the consequences are clear. Shirley Jackson uses Old Man Warner to highlight the dangers of blindly following tradition without questioning it.
For the past few days, Old Man Warner has been acting strangely. I get the impression that I should investigate from his interactions with others and how he creeps about at night. After doing some research, I discovered that Mr. Graves is also suspicious, and that he wants to give Old Man Warner the black dot, which had already been arranged.
Today is the day of the lottery. Currently, the lottery is just a tedious task in my way. I just want to investigate Old Man Warner and see if he is cheating somehow. As I observe him, he seems to be getting more and more anxious. Suddenly, he calls out my name. I walk over to him, and he hands me the black dot.
I’m confused, but before I can ask any questions, he tells me that I’m the one who has to do it.
I don’t want to, but it’s too late. I’m already the one with the black dot. And so, according to tradition, I must sacrifice myself for the good of the village. I don’t want to die, but I see no other way out. As I walk up to the stone platform, I see Old Man Warner watching me with a satisfied look on his face.
In literature, names of characters are frequently used as symbols for ideas, personalities, or roles in the narrative. Namely, NAME can have a significant impact on one’s character and background among others. Summers has associations of joy and liberty. Mr. Summers is almost always in a good mood.
He’s the postmaster and he owns a coal business, so he’s a well-respected member of the community.
Old Man Warner is the oldest man in the village. He’s been attending the lottery for seventy-seven years. He’s grumpy and doesn’t think that any good will come from changes in the lottery.
“Nothing but trouble in that,” Old Man Warner said. “Pack of young fools.” (Jackson 2).
He represents tradition and conservatism. He doesn’t want anything to change, even though he doesn’t really understand why they do the lottery in the first place.
When Tessie Hutchinson is chosen as the winner of the lottery, her husband tries to reason with Mr. Summers and Old Man Warner about the unfairness of the situation.
“You didn’t give him time enough to study up on it,” Mrs. Hutchinson said. “Everybody knows that Steve Randall drew the black spot last year” (Jackson 8).
However, they are unyielding in their decision. Tessie must be stoned to death because that is the way it has always been done.
Old Man Warner serves as a symbol for the dangers of blindly following tradition. He represents those who are resistant to change and progress. While he may seem like a harmless old man, he ultimately represents the forces that allow injustice and violence to persist.