Theme Statement: In the short story “The Possibility of Evil” by Shirley Jackson, the author develops the idea that the face of evil isn't necessarily that of a monster, but rather can be an individual that you’ve known all your life; and that looks can be deceiving.
In Shirley Jackson’s short story “The Possibility of Evil”, Miss Strangeworth first appears to be a kind, innocent, old lady in which the entire town has grown up with and known their entire lives, but as the story progresses she shows to be more cruel than would be expected of her. Throughout the text Miss Strangeworth’s roses are mentioned,
the symbolism of these roses are used to discourage any suspicion against Miss
Strangeworth; Symbolizing that she is a sweet, pure lady, who would never have
any interest in creating the possibility of evil. However, she indeed does have
every intention to create some trouble. Miss Strangeworth tells many times in the story that she just wants to protect her town from evil. But clearly, she loved drama and wanted to start it. She enjoyed people feeling hurt and like she had power over them, otherwise she would not be writing letters. She felt she must protect her town from evil. For without her family, the small, quaint town would not exist. And so almost every night, she would write anonymous letters to the people within her community whom she believed needed guidance. But her idea of guidance was insensitive and harsh. Though she saw it as eye-opening. "The town where she lived had to be kept clean and sweet, but 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." But while at the post office to deliver her letters, Miss Strangeworth accidently dropped one of her cruel little notes. Someone had seen her drop it. After picking up the letter, they decided that they would aid Miss Strangeworth by delivering the letter personally to the person it...