Analysis Of The Nurse In One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest

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There is much debate on whether or not Nurse Ratched, the head nurse portrayed in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, is mentally ill, or if she is just harsh in order to maintain control over the patients in the ward. Many believe she has a form of PTSD that has been used by her working in the ward for many years, while others argue that she may only have an extremely severe case of antisocial personality disorder, also known as ASPD or sociopathy. The reader can, without a doubt, determine for themselves that Nurse Ratched is not your ordinary nurse. There is definitely a psychiatric problem with her that makes her stand out from other nurses. The narrator of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Chief Bromden, has been a patient in an Oregon …show more content…

In chapter 8, McMurphy states, “Good morning, Miss Rat-shed! How’s things on the outside?” (Kesey Chap. 8) This is declaring that Nurse Ratched has rodent-like features. Additionally, rodents work quietly and quickly. They also work very much so to the disadvantage of other people or animals. In the middle ages, rats were also carriers of the Black Plague. The reader gathers that Nurse Ratched infects the patients, orderlies, and staff with her impulsive desire for power and control. Another example of manipulation from Nurse Ratched is in chapter 3 when Chief states, “The Big Nurse recognizes this fear and knows how to put it to use; she’ll point out to an Acute, whenever he goes into a sulk, that you boys be good boys and cooperate with the staff policy which is engineered for your cure, or you’ll end up over on that side.” (Kesey Chap. 3) By stating that she knows how to put it to use, the author indicates that the Nurse knows exactly what she is doing. Not only that, but this line once again proves she has everything under her control and can contort it to her

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