Leadership in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest and Leadership in the Real World

Leadership in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest and Leadership in the Real World

Length: 1609 words (4.6 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Leadership in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest and Leadership in the Real World

The theme of leadership in the ward does not mirror the outside world very accurately, as in contemporary society a leader of a society or an organisation is almost always accountable to a person senior to him. This is not seen in the novel, as Big Nurse seems to be answerable to no one, in fact, it is arguable that everyone answers to her. A hierarchy or class system operates inside the ward which can be clearly seen throughout the course of the novel. Patients living within the ward are ‘classed’ according to the state of their mental health or to the condition of which they suffer from. Chief describes the method of discriminating patients from one another:

‘Across the room from the Acutes are the Chronics… Not in the hospital, these, to get fixed, but to keep them walking the streets…’ (17)

Patients are divided into two categories of Acutes & Chronics:

Chronics are those patients who have a condition which is untreatable, ’machines with flaws which cannot be repaired’ (17) and can only be controlled with medical methods. They will spend the rest of their lives inside the ward of the hospital. Patients who are seen as being likely to recover from their illness, and will return to society.

Acutes are those patients e.g. Harding, who are seen as being likely to recover from their illness, and will return to society. Chronics can either have full use of their bodies or can be again sub-categorised into Wheelers and Vegetables; Those whose movement is impaired to such an extent, they can only move by being pushed around in wheelchairs. Vegetables are patients who, through excessive ECT ‘Shock Shop’ (18) or through t...

... middle of paper ...

... the rules.

Although many countries have abolished the use of corporal or capital punishment for serious crimes, North America is one such a country where, depending on the state, a person may face capital punishment by lethal injection, electric chair or gas chamber. The ward applies corporal punishment in the form of the ECT and it may be argued that a lobotomy is a form of capital punishment because the patient has little or no quality of life left after the procedure, so they might as well have been killed.

Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest mirrors, in the behavior of it’s characters, contemporary society very accurately and can still be relied on, as a contemporary text, an accurate display of the treatment of patients within a mental hospital today.

Works Cited:

Kesey, Ken. One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest. New York: Viking, 1962

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest Essay

- One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest      Sometimes in life people are forced to conform to a certain situation for lack of a better alternative, and this is the case in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. These such people lack the will to stand up for their scruples, and intern are simply guided through their mundane lives by the powers that be. Until someone comes along offering them leadership and the prospect to become “big again.” The man who does so is no other than R.P. McMurphy. Scanlon, Harding, Bibbit, and Chief Bromden may have become adjusted to the oppressive system in which they lived, but certainly were much better adjusted to the real world and life in general after their experienc...   [tags: One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest]

Powerful Essays
1632 words (4.7 pages)

Analysis Of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest Essay

- Throughout society, there are many individuals who influence the growth/development of others. Ones influence on others could either have a positive or negative impact on an individual's life. Throughout Kesey's One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, McMurphy's arrival on the ward influences the way the patients seek their own freedom. McMurphy sympathizes for the patient, not wanting to see them suffer in this “cuckoo nest” of a hospital. Such oppressive control is too much for McMurphy to bear and therefore he begins to challenge the Nurse’s control over all the patients in the wards, symbolically, all of mankind....   [tags: Cuckoo, Randle McMurphy]

Powerful Essays
1521 words (4.3 pages)

One Flew Over The Cuckoo 's Nest Essay

- From the mid-twentieth century, the role of females and other minority groups in society have drastically changed following the feminism movement and World War II. In Ken Kesey’s novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, the author emphasizes the roles of females by presenting characters that exhibit behaviors contrasting the expected ones given by society. He assigns perceived nurturing and caring characters, such as a nurse, wife, and mother, dominating and abrasive roles that contradict typical roles at that time....   [tags: Gender role, Gender, Woman, Feminism]

Powerful Essays
1061 words (3 pages)

Inside the Cuckoo's Nest Essay

- One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is a film directed by Czech Milos Forman in 1975. Using potent elements of fiction--characters, conflict, and symbolism--Forman illustrates the counterculture of the 1960’s. This film depicts American society as an insane asylum that demands conformity from its citizens. The film begins with a conniving convict being assigned to the asylum. R. P. McMurphy is sent to the asylum to be evaluated by the doctors and to determine whether or not he is mentally ill. He is unaware that he will be supervised by an emasculating woman named Nurse Mildred Ratched who watches the patients’ every motion from her nurse’s station....   [tags: Film]

Powerful Essays
1351 words (3.9 pages)

Summary and Analysis of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest Essay

- Summary and Analysis of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest 1.1     Presentation of the theme and my motive to choose it I chose the subject about “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest” written by Ken Kesey in 1962 for my research paper because my mother told me years ago of the accompanying film and how interesting it is. Two years ago a friend of mine came back from his exchange programme in the United States of America. He told me that he and his theatre group there had performed this novel. He was and still is very enthusiastic about the theme and about the way it is written....   [tags: Ken Kesey Novel Film Movies Literature Essays]

Free Essays
4131 words (11.8 pages)

Essay about One Who Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

- Chief is the narrator because if McMurphy were the narrator, he could not quite be telling the story as a fable. He would be empowered to control the path of the narrative--if he were still sane. But Chief, who has not been lobotomized but freed, recounts McMurphy's story and takes the lesson to the outside world. He becomes the messenger. Chief Bromden believes in the "fog" and the power of the "Combine." The fog is, on an individual level, a kind of mental dimness or confusion that also represents the thickness of delusion and suffering that prevents the inmates from seeing their true situation and their true selves....   [tags: Ken Kesey]

Free Essays
1516 words (4.3 pages)

Ken Kesey's One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest Essay

- Nurse Ratched: I hated Nurse Ratched before and I sure do now. Her sneaky little schemes to turn the patients on each other make’s me furious. I’m glad McMurphy broke down the window; it’ll remind the patients that her power is limited and changeable. Although, she made McMurphy stronger than ever, even with the countless electroshock treatments. Proving his desire to remain strong in the face of tyranny. “And he'd swell up, aware that every one of those faces on Disturbed had turned toward him and was waiting, and he'd tell the nurse he regretted that he had but one life to give for his country and she could kiss his rosy red ass before he'd give up the goddam ship....   [tags: character and literary analysis]

Powerful Essays
1643 words (4.7 pages)

Essay on Summary Of ' One Flew Over The Cuckoo 's Nest '

- “There is a point at which everything becomes simple and there is no longer any question of choice, because all you have staked will be lost if you look back. Life 's point of no return.” - Dag Hammarskjold This quote flawlessly describes the state each main character reaches in Chapter 28 of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. By the point of no return, I do not mean that the characters have reached a dead end. My intended meaning is much deeper than that. The point i speak is the point in which they can not revert to their old selves....   [tags: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Randle McMurphy]

Powerful Essays
2078 words (5.9 pages)

one flew over the cucoos nest Essay

- ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST Q3 One of the main themes throughout the novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is ‘societal repression over the individual’. The book is written by Ken Kesey and based around patients’ lives within a mental institution. Kesey uses the novel to voice his opinion concerning the oppressive nature of control those who enforce the control. Such a repressive feeling is amplified by the setting of the institution, the patients and Kesey’s tone throughout the novel. The setting of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is a mental institution, in the countryside of Oregon during the 1960’s....   [tags: essays research papers]

Powerful Essays
1010 words (2.9 pages)

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey Essay

- One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, written by Ken Kesey in 1962, is a book about a lively con man that turns a mental institution upside down with his rambunctious antics and sporadic bouts with the head nurse. Throughout the book, this man shows the others in the institution how to stand up for themselves, to challenge conformity to society and to be who they want to be. It is basically a book of good versus evil, the good being the con man R.P. McMurphy, and the bad being the head nurse, Nurse Ratched....   [tags: One Flew Cuckoo's Nest Kesey]

Free Essays
932 words (2.7 pages)