One Flew Over The Cuckoo 's Nest Essay

One Flew Over The Cuckoo 's Nest Essay

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In the novel “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” the characters are in a mental hospital for various reasons. Narrated by Chief Bromden, a large Native American man, the story tells mainly of a newcomer to the hospital, Randle McMurphy, who is not actually mentally ill, but pretends to be to escape work detail. A much-feared middle-aged woman named Mildred Ratched runs the hospital. She runs the hospital like a concentration camp, with harsh rules, little change, and almost no medical oversight. The “prisoners” have a large amount of fear of Nurse Ratched, as she rules the place like she is a soulless dictator, the patients get no say in any decision made. This is exemplified when McMurphy brings up the World Series, and the patients take a vote on it. Though everyone wants to watch it, they have so much fear for Nurse Ratched that they are too afraid to speak out against her wishes.
After the first World Series vote, McMurphy watches a few other Acutes play Monopoly, and as they begin to argue, he sprays them with water from a hydrotherapy station, shutting them up and lightening the situation. Now that all of the attention is on him, he states that he is leaving and going downtown to watch the World Series. Billy Bibbitt argues that he cannot get out, and McMurphy places a bet that he can and he will. He tells his plan; that he will lift the large, marble hydrotherapy station and smash it through the window, and then he will escape. The other patients place bets on him, as Bibbitt continues to say he won’t be able to lift it. McMurphy begins to attempt to lift it, as the Acutes watch on with bated breath. He makes a scene out of it, eventually failing, but as he leaves, he tells the other Acutes that it only matters that h...


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...ne. He had let his fear, anger, and self-hatred get the best of him. He feared that he would never be able to get out of the facility, because he was committed, not voluntary. He was angry because he knew Nurse Ratched was the main reason Billy had died, but at the same time, he hated himself for getting Billy into the situation, so he lashed out at Nurse Ratched, and attempted to strangle her. He is pulled off of her, and sent “upstairs” to apparently be lobotomized.
When he is escorted back downstairs to Chief, he is not the same person anymore. He is just a lifeless brain inside a living body. He has no emotions, no personality, no real senses; he just exists. In the beginning, McMurphy was a normal, rambunctious guy toying with the head nurse in defense of his newfound friends in the cuckoo’s nest. However, in the end, he was more broken than all of them.

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