Analysis Of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest By Ken Kesey

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One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, by Ken Kesey, takes place in a mental hospital in the middle of the 20th century. The narrator, a long term patient by the name of Bromden, or Chief as he is more often called, takes the reader through his everyday life in the ward and his experiences with the other patients, the staff, and the treatments. In this passage, Chief, who is uncharacteristically free from the fog that normally surrounds him, sits in a window of his dorm, watching a dog on the lawn. Through a combination of mechanistic and naturalistic imagery, Chief examines his past freedom and current captivity. The outside of the ward on this particular night mirrors the dynamic within the ward, providing commentary on the way in which Chief’s …show more content…

Chief had noticed , long ago, that the moon holds all the power in the night, and that stars were always dim in comparison.They clearly belonged together, but the moon never lost it’s power over the stars. Chief used to wait all night for the stars to gain the same power, but they never did (164). Similarly, Nurse Ratched and the patients have a power struggle though, just like the moon, the nurse inevitably retains all the power. Chief watches the dog lope around the field, wild and free, similar to the way he did in his youth. The dog trots off steadily as if to an “appointment” (165).He is sure of his direction and timing, just as Chief was on the path of his life, before he entered the ward. As the dog continues onto the road, a car comes around the corner and the car and the dog “[make] for the same spot of pavement” (165). The car, which fits the mechanical profile used to describe the hospital and staff, continues on its path, while it ends the dog’s. Chief’s life effectively ended the day he entered the ward, just as the dog’s literally did, both at the hands of a mechanical menace. The elements of nature and mechanics in the world outside, create a parallel to the life Chief lives on the inside, allowing him to reveal truths about the

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