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Summary And Analysis Of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest

4315 words - 18 pages

Summary and Analysis of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

1.1     Presentation of the theme and my motive to choose it
I chose the subject about “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest” written by Ken Kesey in 1962 for my research paper because my mother told me years ago of the accompanying film and how interesting it is. Two years ago a friend of mine came back from his exchange programme in the United States of America. He told me that he and his theatre group there had performed this novel. He was and still is very enthusiastic about the theme and about the way it is written. Although I started reading the novel, I didn’t manage to finish it till the day we had to choose our subjects at ...view middle of the document...

In comparison to Randle Patrick Mac Murphy, the protagonist, she “(…) represents ideas of sexual repression, authoritarianism and conservatism” . The nurse and her new patient, who was admitted to the hospital by the state work farm for observation, are in every way opposed to each other - she demanding control, he revelling freedom.
Mac Murphy is claiming to be in the hospital only to enjoy an easier life than he had at the state work farm. He doesn’t seem crazy with his tales of fighting, gambling and lovemaking he brings laughter into the ward for the first time in years. Immediately he tries to make friends with the other patients. Therefore a confrontation between him and Nurse Ratched is inevitable. She asserts her power, he rebels against it, not realizing that the rebellion may be dangerous. She sees him as a competitor but he however overestimates his position as a competitor. Soon he learns the painful truth: He will not leave the hospital until Nurse Ratched agrees to release him, it doesn’t matter that the time in prison is over. Nervously he begins to obey her rules, but rapidly he enters into the struggle of power again because the inmates are already dependent on his leadership. Realizing this fact he tries to act on their behave and to teach them to think and act for themselves. After having had a serious talk with Nurse Ratched Billy committs suicide. As a resault of this Mac Murphy’s last step is an attack on Nurse Ratched – he attempts to rape her and shows her human weakness. However Mac Murphy will never know his victory. His example has given the patients enough courage to brave the outside world and has shown that the authority isn’t unshakeable but he returns from a lobotomy as a ruined man.

3     Institution
3.1     The cuckoo’s nest
The cuckoo’s nest is the psychiatric ward of the hospital. It is in a sense of a microcosms the faithful truth of the American history, of it’s ethical composition, hierarchy and structure of power. Acknowledged point of the ward is that it is a workshop of the society to cure the reformers of the system their harmfulness. By hard cases it takes electroshock treatment and lobotomy. It shouldn’t be forgotten here that apart from it’s function as hospital to improve and keep people who fouls the society’s nest it gives love and security for people who takes flight by themselves of the trouble of the “American Way of Life”. Behind all is in the function of a client a combination with all one’s social, economic and political force which determine who is crazy and who is normal. Crazy means no more than not to be adapt in the society. Representative of the cuckoo’s nest in the novel is Nurse Ratched.

4     Characterisation of Randle Patrick Mac Murphy
„Mac Murphy’s arms and neck and face are sunburned and bristled with curly orange hairs. He’s got tattoos on each big shoulder; one says `Fighting Leathernecks´ and has a devil with a red eye and red horns and a M – 1 rifle, and the...

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