Style and Setting in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest Essay

Style and Setting in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest Essay

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One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest written by Ken Kesey in 1962. This novel is based on the experience Ken Kesey had during his time working in a mental institution as an orderly. Ken Kesey’s novel is a powerful critique of early 1960’s American society. The three main techniques that Kesey uses to create the Tragic form. In this novel Kesey has used the three main technique to create an inevitable conflict and outcomes that is similar to tragedy. The three main literary techniques that Ken Kesey uses are narrative structure, foreshadowing and symbolism. In this essay I will explore how Kesey uses these three techniques to form the Tragic form and shows how McMurphy gets lobotomized in the end but still wins the war against the Big Nurse.
The most notable technique that Ken Kesey uses in ‘One Flew Over The Cockoo’s Nest’ to create a Tragic form is narrative structure. Ken Kesey has used narrative structure very wisely in this novel. Instead of having chapters in the novel =, Ken Kesey has divided the novel into four parts, which foreshadows the tragedy which will happen in the novel. The narrative structure in this novel establishes the fatal flaw and conflict between McMurphy and the Big Nurse. Kesey has used narrative structure to show in part one it introduces the conflict between McMurphy and the Big Nurse, It even shows how McMurphy at the end of part one brings all the patient out from the fog and where Bromden chooses the pain of reality and sanity over the safety of his delusions. “McMurphy’s got hidden wires hooked to it, lifting it slow just to get me out of the fog and in the open where I’m far gone. He’s wires…. No. That’s not the truth. I lifted myself.” Pg. 123 This quote tells the reader that the patients are rising up...

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...h the Nurse and her force, the Chief had that energy to fight against the Nurse and whereas McMurphy was exhausted and didn’t had the energy to fight back, as the novel continued McMurphy was getting weaker.
In this novel Kesey has used narrative structure, foreshadowing and symbolism to create the tragic form and to show he downfall of McMurphy throughout the novel. As the down fall of McMurphy progresses throughout the novel his ideas got stronger and at the end of the novel his death reinforced his ideas even more, defeating the Big Nurse due to patients signing out form the ward for freedom. Her control over the ward was shattered when the Chief used the control panel to escape from the ward. The electroshock therapy table was one of the major reason of McMurphy not able to escape the ward.

Works Cited

Kesey, K., 1962. One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest, Signet

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