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,
No, not many at all” (Kesey, 436). This reveals that after constant manipulation the victims brain is traumatized and is left with an ability to find change. Lastly, most men in the ward find Nurse Ratched to be scary and something to be reckoned with. The fear of Nurse Ratched causes the men to see most women as scary monsters and something to be hated. For example Harding is revealed to have many problems with his wife.
While McMurphy’s actions from his entrance appeared to be rebellious in nature, he was not intentionally countering Ratched, though, he very quickly realized that Nurse Ratched enforced many petty rules, such as patients were only allowed to gamble for cigarettes and patients were required to stay together at all times. Ratched essentially worked to micromanage the patients’ every action. The longer McMurphy stayed, the more he learned about what he considered to be injustices patients endured, although Ratched would protest that rules were implemented with the best interest of the patients in mind. In disregarding most rules, McMurphy started to do as he pleased in order to spite Ratched, sparking rebellion. A charismatic personality greatly benefitted him during this entire ordeal, allowing McMurphy to gain access to loyalty from other patients, who saw him as their savior, while politeness and charm directed towards Big Nurse meant she could not punish him for talking back.
Nurse Ratched appears to be caring and well intentioned but she may still believe strongly that in spoiling McMurphy plans for change and various other schemes she is acting for the greater good of her patients. However, when McMurphy challenges against her she become even more "dangerous", she shows her resilience against his plans and doesn 't flinch from taking measures to ensure continued devotion to the rules she has set. Indeed it is only at the end that we see just how far she will go to enforce her authority which include the rules set by her for the ward, leaving aside individual patients interests; rights and welfare merely in an effort to establish her own position as the head of the
The hospital ward is controlled and dominated by Nurse Ratched, who has over the years gained enough power to now control every thing and person in the ward. She runs the ward—outfit—like a “smooth, accurate, precision-made machine”(22). She is intolerant of any deviation or variation from the regiment that she has been accustomed to imposing. She manipulates the ward by using a perfect system of punishments, rewards and interpersonal conflict. For example, Chief tells about how she will reward the inmates with extra sleep in the mornings if they rat on each other by writing down information in Nurse Ratched’s logbook.
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.
Through his antics, the men are saved from society in the form of Nurse Ratched’s regime. With their freedom, the men can enjoy life for what it truly
But Nurse Ratched doesn’t care and just leaves the room angry at them for trying to rebel. “ ‘The meeting was closed,’ she says. Her smile is still there, but the back of her neck as she walks out of the day room and into the Nurses’ Station, is red and swelling like she’ll blow apart any second” (page 142) She knew that they had won the vote but was outraged on the fact that McMurphy was disrupting her perfect system. The other side of the male stories is the doctor, he is in charge of the nurses, but is not always there to keep everything in line, without him Nurse Ratched take advantage over the
Also the hospital, run mostly by women, treat only male patients. We see that through Nurse Ratched's administration, the ability they have to emasculate even the manliest and strongest men. An example of this could be when a patient named Rawler commits suicide by cutting off his own testicles. Chief then says, "all he had to do
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest reflects how individuals don't want to conform to certain rules that an institution wants them to follow. The novel really gets to the point when someone is pushed and pushed to follow rules that are overbearing, they crack and do the total opposite of what's expected from them. McMurphy just wants to enjoy himself and get the other patients in the ward to open their eyes and make them realize that they're being controlled by a tyrannic figure who won't let them have fun as well. The mundanity of going through the same routine is mind numbing to the point their patients' sanity turns into insanity. The mundanity may only be broken when one breaks the loop of going through the same thing every single day.