"Nothing builds authority up like silence, splendor of the strong and shelter of the weak" (Charles de Gaulle). This idea is reflected in Ken Kesey’s novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, where it is shown how authority becomes more powerful by abusing the silence of the people. This silence is literally and figuratively represented through Chief Bromden, a longtime patient of a psychiatric ward during the 1960s in the United States. Bromden, along with all the other patients in the ward, religiously abide by the rules and regulations enforced by the ward administration, particularly Nurse Ratched, a strict and abusive manipulator who does anything in order to maintain her power. This power dynamic quickly evolves
As soon as he sees Billy laying there dead, he is speechless. He looks at Nurse Ratched and she tells McMurphy that he is the one at blame. McMurphy freaks out on Ratched and begins to grab her neck with both of his hands and strangle her. Randle McMurphy rips open Nurse Ratched’s uniform, revealing her breasts, which shows her femininity (The Litcharts Guide To One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest). Ratched’s “tyrant-like” personality is no longer powerful in the institution. The manipulative behavior of the Nurse is finally defeated and all of the victims are now powerful and willing to fight against her power.
In Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, the main character, Randle Patrick McMurphy, is a perfect example of a tragic hero. Throughout the novel McMurphy sets himself up to be the tragic hero by resenting Nurse Ratched’s power and defending the other patients. He can be classified as a contemporary tragic hero, but he also includes elements of Aristotle’s tragic hero. McMurphy’s rebellious nature and ultimate demise are what truly makes him as a tragic hero.
One main event that occurs in the first third of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest is the first group meeting Mr. McMurphy joined on the ward. Nurse Ratched begins to talk about another patient named Harding, and his issues with his wife. After listening to what the nurse had to say, McMurphy made an inappropriate joke concerning the matter of Harding’s wife. Everyone was amused with his joke, except for Nurse Ratched. She retaliates by reading Mr. McMurphy’s file out loud for everyone to hear. This was the first time as a reader I got to hear about McMurphy’s history and why he was put on the ward. She reads how Mr. McMurphy is 35, never married, was dishonorably discharged from war in Korea, has a prolonged history of street
Fear is within everybody in the world, nobody can escape it and nobody can avoid encountering it. Fear can define many things: being unable to talk to others, having a rush of adrenaline because something is frightening , or just the fact that the task at hand is too hard to handle and someone could potentially yell at someone for not completing it. Fear is the main element in both the novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s nest and the film The Ward.
Author Ken Kesey, in his novel One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, exemplifies that people can be both mentally and psychically manipulated. He supports his claim by first using examples, then using analysis, and finally using rhetorical questions. Kesey’s purpose is to enlighten the reader in order to exemplify the idea that everything is not always what it seems. He adopts a dark tone for the reader.
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. This combination of many mind and life altering diagnoses leads to an interesting point of view, and a deeper look into the lives of people living with the
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. Both McMurphy and Nurse Ratched approached their leadership in different ways. McMurphy uses transformational leadership, which is a leader that “must perform some combination of the transactional functions (plan, direct, organize, control) in order to build respect and trust… [and the] leader gets people to work towards some higher purpose or goal” (O’Connor). In other words, it is a leader who achieves a “higher goal”, while “build[ing] respect and trust” from the people. On the other hand, Nurse Ratched uses authoritarian leadership, which is when “Policies [are] determined by the leader. [The] leader determines what each member should do and with whom he should work… Some find it difficult to diffuse authority… [which] causes some to feel threatened and insecure” (Sferra). More simply, an authoritative leader is one that has supreme power over the people. McMurphy’s transformational
In the drama film, One Flew Over the Cuckoo 's Nest, Patrick McMurphy was moved from a prison farm to a mental institution to get evaluated for his erratic behavior. Upon being transported to the institution, all his assumptions about his new home were completely wrong. The head nurse, Nurse Ratched, has the whole hospital under her control with little to no freedom for the patients. All the inmates at the institution go through rigorous training to become obedient to Nurse Ratched and her strict schedule and rules. The institution was a very controlled environment with the patients having no control over their own life’s while there. There are four characteristics of a controlled environment and they include the following: status hierarchy,
“One flew over the Cuckoo’s nest” is a film directed by Miloš Forman, based on the novel by Ken Kesey. The Film was released in 1975. It is the story of a convicted man, trying to outsmart the American legal system by playing mentally ill. The film starts at the beginning when the main character, Randle McMurphy, enters the mental institution. It won 6 Golden Globes as well as 5 Oscars and many other nominations. What separates this film from others is its’ use of movie devices and techniques, as well as the emotionally charged story.
Who would have thought the new patient, McMurphy, would be the person who saves the other patients? In Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, McMurphy’s impact on the patients is evident. Before his arrival, the patients were under the strict rule of Nurse Ratched. They did not know how to stop her anger. McMurphy, like the other patients, is also mentally unstable and has made questionable decisions in the past. Despite McMurphy's alleged flaws, he inspires the men with a rebellious attitude, helps the patients increase their confidence, and make the patients realize they have a place in life outside of the ward.
The book, One who Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, by Ken Kesey, is an eccentric story on the cruel treatment of patients within psychiatric wards in the 1960s. It is told from the narration of an indigenous man, named Chief Bromden, a character who is deeply conflicted and wounded inside, as he narrates the story of another patient McMurphy. McMurphy is not like Chief, nor any of the other patients for that matter, for he is a man who refuses to follow the wards rules and does whatever it takes in the book to strip the head nurse, Miss Ratched, of her power, in a fight for the patients, sovereignty within the ward. His rebellious attitude unfolds and the consequences begin unveiling
The conflict between the two main character's Nurse Ratched and McMurphy serves as a bridge for the overarching theme of sexuality. Or to be more specific the battle of sexuality. In the book the two main characters represent both sides of the spectrum when it comes to sexuality concerning genders. Nurse Ratched represents feminism and McMurphy represents masculinity. With the two conflicting views of how the character’s believe the institution for the mentally ill should be run you can see more of the juxtaposition between the two. Nurse Ratched who ruled with an iron handed fist to keep her distance away from the patients of the ward and establish her role of a women in power in the institution. This from the beginning of the book sets a
Kesey has used characterisation to get the idea that in this novel there are aspects of venerability and strength. In Nurse Ratched’s case, Kesey has made it so that she is shown with strength and power over the whole ward, including the black men in white, other nurses, and mainly the patients. An example of Nurse Ratched’s power over the patients is when she says to Billy Bibbit, “What worries me, Billy, ' she said- I could hear the change in her voice- 'is how your mother is going to take this.” This shows how one sentence was able to debilitate Billy into begging Nurse for forgiveness and restraint of telling his mother. There is an obvious idea presented by Kesey that the Nurse is dominant over Billy, who has become very vulnerable. Nurse Ratched is shown as a character of strength by the way the writer has created her character. Nurse Ratched is also seen as a strong figure by the way the other characters talk about her, for example when Chief says “To beat her you don 't have to whip her two out of three or three out of five, but every time you meet. As soon as you let down your guard, as soon as you lose once, she 's won for good.” The writer has used this line to show us how both Chief and the other patient give her the strong and authoritative
The film, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, prompts very important aspect of the human condition. In the movie, the protagonist, Mac McMurphy, is deemed dangerous, so the mental institute tries to suppress him (Kesey). The film highlights various aspects of human conditions like psychology, sociology and philosophy. The mental institute tries to suppress the mentally challenged people rather than to try to communicate with them. The warden employs subtle humiliation tactics to subdue the patients, which was challenged by Mac McMurphy (Kesey). The movie shows that there is a fine line between being normal and acting normal. The protagonist was forced to become a mental patient to make him less dangerous. The movie