Relationships with authority figures in our lives can be incredibly complex. This can be seen in the passage from Ken Kesey's One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, between the narrator, Chief Bromden and Nurse Ratched. By using literary elements such as dehumanizing word choice, objectifying characterization, and an unreliable narrator , Kesey is able to convey the respecting yet fearful power dynamic in Chief's mind. Throughout the entire passage, the words chosen are used to make the Nurse seem like a monster, and an inhuman machine. Her finger and lips are a "funny orange", compared to a soldering iron, which is able to bring on extreme pain with just a touch. Her weaved bag apparently doesn't contain ladylike objects, instead "gears, cogs..tiny pills..needles, forceps, watchmakers' pliers" and "rolls of copper wire". In Chief's eyes, Nurse Ratched is not a person. By choosing these items to name, and stating that there is no "woman stuff", it depicts that he believes she's unlike anyone else. Powerful, scary and not afraid to hurt anyone. When she approaches the boys in a huddle, Chief sees her "swelling up...till her back's splitting out of the white uniform" and her arms are long enough to wrap around them "five, six times". The exaggeration of her …show more content…
A large portion of the last paragraph in the passage demonstrates this. Her face being "calculated", "blend of white and cream and baby-blue eyes, small nose, pink little nostrils", and comparing her to an "expensive baby doll" shows the side of his feelings besides fear. Even though she may seem like a monster, she's still a woman. Almost like a baby who throws a fit of rage and wants to destroy everything in their path. He then goes on to say that adding her "big, womanly breasts" were a mistake. She is nothing more than a baby with a large "bosom" and an
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In the novel, One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest, Kesey writes from the perspective of a patient Chief Bromden, a schizophrenic patient who is pretending to be deaf and "dumb" on a psychiatric ward in Oregon in the 1950s. The novel encapsulates the story of a new patient, R.P. McMurphy, who is introduced to the ward where patients experience much abuse until McMurphy is admitted and changes everything with his charismatic personality. McMurphy is in a constant struggle to feed confidence to the men on the ward in an effort to help them stand up for themselves. However he is very selfish and uses his charisma for personal gain as well as acts of justice. Using his charm, Murphy takes advantage not only of the evil bane of the ward Nurse Rachted,
2. In the novel, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, by Ken Kesey, Kesey uses images of machinery to compare to Big Nurse, Miss Ratched, and the black boy because of the control they maintain in the ward and destroy the patients individuality. As Chief Bromden, the narrator, is thinking about over the years with Miss Ratched, he describes, “I see her sit in the center of this web of wires like a watchful robot, tend her network with mechanical insect skill, know every second which wire runs where and just what current to send up to get to the result she want” (Kesey 29). Miss Ratched is conveyed as a robot by the Chief with how she controls and knows how to control the ward and the people in it.
In Ken Kesey’s 1962 novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest the main character and narrator, Chief Bromden, is noticeably stuck inside his own head as he acts deaf and dumb to escape the pressures of being a part of something. As the novel moves on, for someone who’s perception of living is to stay transparent and withdrawn totally inside himself the Chief takes a transformation from his delusional mind and gains strength physically and mentally, creating a journey towards freedom and finally, breaking free from the ward and from himself. Kesey uses the story of the transformation to unravel ideas about how the pressures of society can lead individuals to conform within themselves, resulting in them to feel weak and insignificant, separating
Nurse Ratched is dominant, racist, and unfair in every way possible. Chief’s description of her physical appearance includes comparing her to a “tractor” where he can “smell the machinery inside” (5) and the way she “walks stiff” (4). Sticking someone like Chief, who is innocent but insane, in a setting like this is what fails him from ever getting
“While the ward remains orderly and on schedule beneath the tyranny of Nurse Ratchet, the men are subdued and drugged beyond any human recognition. The patients are distinguished as either Acute or Chronic, depending on their severity, but within the ward at the very beginning of the novel, they are essentially equal in their actions and humanity” (Maupin-Thomas). This shows that Nurse Rachet is a dictator. The significance of this is in the 1950’s and 60’s is when the cold war was ramping back up. So, this book is a form of anti-Soviet Union propaganda, connecting tyrannical rule of the Soviet Union to nurse rachet.
Meadow Neubauer-Keyes Kozak 2nd Hour - Prompt 1 19 April 2023 Graded Essay #3 Authority and power are some of the most abused concepts in any society, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, by Ken Kesey exhibits this dynamic flawlessly. Kesey portrays a microcosm of American society in a mental institution led by a woman called Nurse Ratched. The administration of the mental institution manipulates the population of the hospital into subordination. Through the lens of a schizophrenic man with a warped sense of reality and his perception of a feisty peer, Kesey communicates the necessity of confrontation and rebellion when there is injustice and the consequences of blind acceptance of biased and ill-intentioned authority.
Chief characterizes the Nurse as almost robotic in her manipulation and intimidation. In the first chapter of the book, Chief Bromden illustrates how Nurse Ratched uses her position in the ward to control the patients. Chief says, “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” (18). Nurse Ratched uses her power in the ward to manipulate and control the patients. This is important because with the Nurse's control, the patients are unable to think and act for themselves.
Through Nurse Ratched, Cuckoo's Nest reveals the underlying tyranny of the Proletariat by the Bourgeoisie. As the power imbalance grows, the author unveils the actual face of Nurse Ratched and helps readers grasp the novel's power dynamics. After a brief expression of rebellion by McMurphy, the picturesque mask of Nurse Ratched falls off as she yells, “You’re committed, you realize. You are… under the jurisdiction of me… the staff.’... ‘Under jurisdiction and control’” (144).
In Ken Kesey’s novel, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, the universal message that authority can be enforced through matriarchal practices which forces inferior individuals to conform to society’s standards is prevalent throughout the novel. Characters throughout the novel depict the possible outcomes of someone subject to conformity under matriarchal authority. Nurse Ratched is the epitome of conformity. She uses her power to instill fear in her patients and her authority forces them to conform to society’s standards. Patients throughout the novel experience a conflict of man vs. society.
Nurse Ratched’s Truth One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is a novel with a clear engagement shown toward the reader regarding Nurse Ratched’s measures. Author Ken Kesey expresses Ratched’s actions through multiple altercations with other leading characters. The main conflict in this novel is how Nurse Ratched manipulates her power in the ward, and inevitably does not want to better her patients.
These elements keep the nurse in power, as many of the patients fear being the target of one of these meetings and worry that they will again be betrayed by others. By introducing order through these activities, Nurse Ratched undermines the safety of the patients that should be under her care and keeps them silent. Nurse Ratched's oppressive order is not only seen in a literal sense, but also through the attitudes of the patients under her care. Chief Bromden describes the nurse as being “able to set the wall clock at whatever speed she wants just by turning one of those dials“ (Kesey 70). Nurse Ratched’s control over the patients’ lives extends to the point where
Embedded in his novel is compelling rhetoric that validates Kesey’s disapproval of the actions of government institutions. Employing allusion, Kesey’s character Chief Bromden - an embodiment of Kesey’s attack against the governmental treatment of the mentally insane - alludes to the nursery rhyme his mother sang to him: “Ting. Tingle, tingle, tangle toes, she 's a good fisherman, catches hens, puts 'em inna pens...wire blier, limber lock, three geese inna flock... one flew east, one flew west, one flew over the cuckoo 's nest... O-U-T spells out... goose swoops down and plucks you out” (285).
Ken Kesey uses his novel, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, to describe the lives of patients in a mental institution, and their struggle to overcome the oppressive authority under which they are living. Told from the point of view of a supposedly mute schizophrenic, the novel also shines a light on the many disorders present in the patients, as well as how their illnesses affect their lives during a time when little known about these disorders, and when patients living with these illnesses were seen as an extreme threat. Chief Bromden, the narrator of the novel, has many mental illnesses, but he learns to accept himself and embrace his differences. Through the heroism introduced through Randle McMurphy, Chief becomes confident in himself, and is ultimately able to escape from the toxic environment Nurse Ratched has created on the ward. Chief has many disorders including schizophrenia, paranoia, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder, and, in addition to these illnesses, he pretends to be deaf and dumb.
Throughout Ken Kesey’s, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, the balance of power is challenged in the psychiatric ward. Out of the several leaders that appear in the novel, Nurse Ratched and McMurphy are the most prominent. During Nurse Ratched and McMurphy struggle for power, they share many of the same qualities. It is argued that: “McMurphy and Ratched are alike in intelligence, military service, distinctive (if opposite) clothing, and conventionally masculine qualities” (Evans). These small similarities; however, do not distract the characters from fighting for their individual beliefs.
The author of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Kesey, presents the ideas about venerability and strength by using his characters and the way they interact with each other to establish whether they are a submissive or a dominant, tamed or leading, venerable or strong. Kesey uses strong personalities to show the drastic difference between someone who is vulnerable and someone who is strong. Nurse Ratchet is a perfect example of how Kasey presents the idea of strength over the venerability of others (the patients). Keys also exhibited vulnerability throughout characters such as Chief Bromden and his extensive habit of hiding himself in all means possible from Nurse Ratchet. Another idea presented by Kesey is a character’s false thought on what