Shirley Jackson (Dec 14, 1916 - Aug 8, 1965) was an American author who gained fame - and notoriety - with her June 26, 1948 publication of The Lottery in The New Yorker Magazine. The story was met with an avalanche of feedback, including hate mail and cancelled subscriptions. Many folks interpreted the story as an attack on the values of small towns America. The reader should keep in mind that during the later 1940s, when the work was published, many city councils across America sponsored weekly cash-prize lotteries that would draw people together in rural communities. The lotteries were meant to spark commerce for the local merchants. Despite it's reception at the time, the story has become accepted as a short story classic and is widely read in American classrooms today.