Nurse Ratched Character Analysis

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Without a doubt, Nurse Ratched and McMurphy were two of the largest characters in the novel, lying on two opposite sides of the novel’s central conflict regarding institutional authority. In the course of several discussions, various perspectives regarding the relationship of these two forces arouse, ultimately resulting in the realization of how it is eternally and purposefully debatable about whether the Combine or McMurphy truly won the novel’s central conflict and the true meaning of victory.
Originally, I went into this discussion believing that the only message the novel could convey was that of McMurphy being successful in liberating the other patients. Throughout the vast majority of the novel, Chief had consistently believed “there is no real help against [Nurse Ratched] or her Combine.” (113). In all my conversations, we had a consensus that Nurse Ratched was essentially a metaphor for society at large in trying to control people. Thus, I held in high regards the piece of evidence when there are people, thanks to McMurphy, “drunk and running” and “carrying on with women” to the point, and Chief comes to believe that “maybe the Combine wasn’t all-powerful.” (305) In causing an actual change to the mindset of patients like Chief, McMurphy had truly mentally liberated the patients from the control of not Nurse Ratched but that of the entire Combine.
Nevertheless, in my second conversation, my partner pointed out that this very same event had left to the physical

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