Evil In The Possibility Of Evil By Shirley Jackson

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In the short story “The Possibility of Evil”, Shirley Jackson shows that an intention that seems beneficial to one person may seem harmful to others. Firstly, after Miss Strangeworth finishes talking and checking on the citizens of her town, she writes letters to the people she met with the intention that the letters would help get rid of the “evil” in her town and solve people’s problems. While Miss Strangeworth writes her anonymous letters, she thinks “Miss Chandler, the librarian, and Linda Stewart's parents would have gone unsuspectingly ahead with their lives, never aware of possible evil lurking nearby, if Miss Strangeworth had not sent letters opening their eyes. […] as long as evil existed unchecked in the world, it was Miss Strangeworth's duty to keep her town alert to it. […] people everywhere were lustful and evil and degraded, and needed to be watched; the world was so large, and there was only one Strangeworth left in it.” (1)…show more content…
It means that Miss Strangeworth has a good intention for writing the letters. Since her family built the town, Miss Strangeworth feels that she owns the town and that it is her responsibility to make sure that every ”evil” in the world is revealed. She also says that “there was only one Strangeworth left” in the world, which means Miss Strangeworth is the last heir of her family and believes that only her bloodline can expose the world’s evil. Since she is also seventy-one years old, it means she is very old and she wants to reveal everyone’s problems to help her town as much as she can before she dies of old age. In order to expose people’s problems, she writes anonymous letters to people to let them know about the “evil”. However, the citizens of her town interpreted the intention of her letters
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