"Like all men in Babylon, I have been a proconsul; like all, a slave. I have also known omnipotence, opprobrium, imprisonment..."
Borges then describes the lottery, which was created by "The Company." While the lottery started out like any typical lottery, it evolved into one which offered not only prizes for the winners, but also consequences for the losers. Further evolution increased the complexity of the lottery; monetary prizes were eliminated, and replaced only with positive experiences (i.e.: being proconsul.) Additionally, lotteries would be drawn upon other lotteries, ad infinitum. Therefore, not only would you be punished to death, perhaps, but your executioner might also be chosen randomly, and the choice of weapon, etc. With the passage of time, everyone participated in the ever-increasingly secret lottery. Inevitably, ever The Company dictates aspect of everyone’s life.
Other Stories With Theme of Undefined Reality
The Circular Ruins (Full Text)
The Circular Ruins (Summary)
The Immortal (Summary)
The Library of Babel (Full Text)
The Library of Babel (Summary)
The Secret Miracle (Summary)
Theme of the Traitor and the Hero (Summary)
The Waiting (Summary)
Criticism With Reference to this Story
Jonathan Meades The Quest for Borges
David Littlejohn Interruptions
Carter Wheelock Borges’ New Prose