Allusions In One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest

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“It's like everyone tells a story about themselves inside their own head. Always. All the time. That story makes you what you are. We build ourselves out of that story.”― Patrick Rothfuss.

There is power in words, power in the way they can bring new ideas and opinions to the people who perceive them. The people who understand this the most, are the people who use them to weave stories for their audience. It stands to reason that these practitioners might draw from each other, as a student who cannot help but to glance over at another student's work with the purpose of improvement. In the classroom this is known (in certain situations) as cheating or sometimes just collaboration, but in works of literature it is known as copyright infringement
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Literary allusions are an author taking another's work and refrencing it in their own work. It is not that literary…show more content…
To some this in an unneeded, extraneous line in the story that adds no real substance. To others, this provides insight into the characters of Nurse Ratched and Mr. McMurphy. The white whale refers to Moby Dick by Herman Melville. In Moby Dick, the whale wreaks havoc and is relentlessly pursued by Captain Ahab. In the end it can be argued that Moby, the whale, and the Captain are both defeated, paralleling the story with Nurse Ratched and Mr. McMurphy. So when the reader reads that line in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest they can, only if they have read Moby Dick, see some foreshadowing and see the brewing madness that will eventually overcome the nurse and McMurphy in their attempts to overthrow each other, including McMurphy running around in nothing but his underwear. For others, this point which enriches the story, is completely lost leaving the author's message to also be
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