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
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In the novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey there are multiple instances in which the protagonist’s values and integrity are tested. Randle McMurphy, a tall and boisterous redhead, is committed to an insane asylum where he meets Nurse Ratched, who is also known as ‘The Big Nurse’, and Chief Bromden, and Billy Bibbit among other adult men on the ward. McMurphy is an outgoing new patient who makes it his mission to ‘break’ Nurse Ratched’s strict and overbearing rule over the ward without getting lobotomized, having electroshock therapy, or sent up to the Disturbed Ward. McMurphy’s values are repeatedly challenged when Nurse Ratched, a sadistic bulldog of a woman, attempts to get a rise out of him in various ways. She calls him by the wrong name on purpose, and yet he maintains his morals, and remains in control.
The book written by Ken Kesey, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, takes place in a mental hospital during the 1960’s where the nurse, Miss Ratched, is in charge. She treats her patients poorly and even goes as far as prescribing them with electroshock therapy and lobotomy. Because of this atmosphere on the ward, most patients live life in what the author describes as a fog. They do the same things everyday and aren’t really living, but are kinda just there. Eventually a man named McMurphy decides to do something about it despite the problems it causes for himself.
It is often said that in order to gain something of value, something of equal or more value must be sacrificed. Throughout Ken Kesey’s book One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, many things are gained, such as relationships, power, self-confidence, and independence while many things are lost to compensate for that gain, such as power, identity, control and people. The last chapter of the book brings the issue/conflict of gain and loss to a resolution. In chapter 29, the patients complete their transformation into independent and self-confident men with the help of McMurphy and the loss of the Big Nurse’s power, while McMurphy completes his transformation into an immortal ideal, rather than an individual. The independence and self-confidence gained
No matter where one is the world their always exists two important elements. The element of chaos, and the element of control. Both of these elements find themselves rather clearly defined and on display in Ken Kesey’s novel “One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest”. The representative of chaos: Randell McMurphy, and of control: Nurse Ratched.. Throughout the novel the two spar over their conflicting ideologies on how life should be in the ward, and how the men there should act.
The novel, One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest, takes place in a mental institution in which the patients are either insane or scared to survive in the real world. The patients want to rebel against Nurse Ratched, the head of the ward, but; they do not have the courage. When Randle Patrick McMurphy comes into the ward, he helps these patients gain the confidence to go against Nurse Ratched. With his light-spirited and dauntless attitude, McMurphy represents the Christ figure.
In the novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, the mental patients were not able to view Nurse Ratched as a woman, despite her physical features. This was because of her ruthless demonstrations of authority, and strength. Nurse Ratched is the all-powerful nurse in the ward of a mental hospital, during the years of the 50s and 60s. The men are fearful of her and always complied with her rules accordingly until Randall McMurphy swaggered in. Nonetheless his power was still minor to Nurse Ratched’s.
In One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest the patients are the powerless, forced to undergo the same routine daily, dictated by Nurse Ratched. Kesey shows the patients’ lack of power by often contrasting them against people with power like McMurphy, or Nurse Ratched. When McMurphy first enters the ward “he’s got iron on his heels and he rings it on the floor like horseshoes” (p. 10). He is presented as a cowboy-like character bursting with confidence, a direct juxtaposition against the meek and submissive patients on the ward.
Psychiatric hospitals are proven to provide assistance and treatment to those who live with mental illnesses. The system is designed to take away the suffering, assist in the patient’s recovery, and put them on the path toward good health and a happy life. Although hospitals are supposed to take a certain level of responsibility over a patient; in this ward, the control over the patients are clearly interfering with their well being. In Ken Kesey’s novel, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Nurse Ratched’s suffocating authority and the ward’s power over the patients are exacerbating their illness instead of helping these patients heal, proving that them being mentally ill is a faux. Nurse Ratched controls the men with her therapeutic community.
A leader is a confident person who sets an example for others to follow; He or She is powerful and when no one else steps up they take charge. But the crazy idea behind being a leader are the ways a person can lead differently from others. In the Novel One flew over the cuckoo's nest by ken kesey there are two very different methods of being a leader. There is the head Nurse in the mental hospital known as Nurse Ratched who manipulates and breaks down the patients one by one to control and gain power. And there’s a big red headed man known as Mc Murphy who was sentenced for 6 months at the hospital.
In Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, female characters are utilized in a way that reflect how appearances set expectations in the form of gender roles. Just as the slender, curvy, dainty form of a woman is seen, so is her delicate, conforming, and docile manner expected. Kesey’s most forefront female, Nurse Ratched, is an unexpected mix of awe-inspiring and fear-inducing. Her appearance, however, is repeatedly described as ruined due to her having huge breasts. Since breasts are obviously characteristic of females, they take away from the role she aims to keep as the head of her ward.
The post World War Two era within the United States served as a time of cultural rebirth within the country. This brought forward deep rooted issues inside the fabric of the country, including racial oppression and the existence of a patriarchy. These factors are echoed in Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest in which the characters represent a microcosm of the American society, exploring it’s ideals and issues, and acting as a device of fortelling for the future of the country. This is primarily seen through main characters Randle Patrick McMurphy in his attempts to challenge the institution acting as a parallel to the civil rights movement, in Nurse Ratched as her oppressive beliefs show resemblance to the status quo and Chief Bromden who represents the everyday man and his acceptance of the condition of the nation.
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.
A famous Chinese proverb states, “One dog barks at something and a hundred bark at the bark”. This use of animal imagery to explain the issues with human behavior can also be seen in Ken Kesey’s 1962 novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. The novel, told through the eyes of schizophrenic chronic Chief Bromden, revolves around R. P. McMurphy helping the patients overcome their fear of Nurse Ratched and her power and control over the ward. Throughout the book, Kesey uses animal imagery to depict the personalities and behaviors of Nurse Ratched, McMurphy, and the patients. Nurse Ratched is a wolf, and she thrives off of her overbearing control over the patients in the ward and enjoys having everything conform to her set of rules.
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
Authoritative leadership is less effective than collaborative leadership because fear and power create anarchy and dissent, while respect and decency create a harmonious society. This claim can be supported by Hobbes, Macbeth, and Plato. Primarily, the role of collaborative leadership is more effective