One Flew Over The Cuckoos\'s Nest

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is a novel, which depicts the lives of the
classified, mentally insane in a struggle against the authority of a hospital
ward. Over the course of the novel, the hospital ward turns into a place of
rebellion while the wise-guy hero, tries to reform the institution while
dignifying the people within. The story is told in the first person point of
view by Chief Bromden a huge patient who is sharing his mental hospital
experience. He is a disturbed man who has fooled all of the other patients and
the staff into believing that he is deaf and can’t speak. He thinks of the
hospital as a place of fear, rather than of a place of healing. This partly has
to due with the head of the hospital ward, Nurse Ratched; a woman who believes
in order at all times. She is viewed as the hospitals most powerful person, in
turn, the least liked by the patients. In order to escape the Nurse, Chief

Bromden thinks back to his childhood in an Indian village, but this also evokes
the Combine force, which sends his mind into a deep fog. Early on in the story

Kesey, introduces the character Randolph McMurphy, a newly admitted patient. He
is a boisterous man with much self-confidence and a very friendly personality.

He claims that he’s only at the hospital to enjoy an easier life compared to
the life he was living at a state farm. McMurphy quickly familiarizes himself
with the people surrounding him and tells stories to all of the patients. His
humorous personality enlightens the patients and the ward in general. However,

Nurse Ratched doesn’t like this change because she feels McMurphy is a
manipulator. Her controlling personality clashes with his easy going personality
and as expected she tries to enforce rules, while he is ready to rebel against
them. Nurse Ratched has dealt with people similar to McMurphy by punishing them
with electro-shock therapy or with lobotomies. Both are to degrade the"offender", the latter of the two makes the patients feel inferior to
society on account of their sexuality. McMurphy is greatly disturbed by the

Nurse’s antics. He is dissatisfied by the way she treats the patients at the
daily Group Meetings. She decrees the patients self esteem so greatly that she
furthers them all into a state of depression. McMurphy decides that he’s going
to take a stand and he bets Harding, a patient who is intelligent, but is
ashamed of his effeminacy, that he can make the Nurse loose control of the ward
without getting in trouble. During his fight against the ward, McMurphy
entertains the patients with his skirmishes with the Nurse. They all appear to
be on his side, until an issue concerning watching the World Series on the
television arises. McMurphy takes a stand, but only one man stands by his side,

Cheswick. In order for the patients to watch the baseball game they would vote
on it at the next Group Meeting. McMurphy needed one more vote to secure the
game, so he turned to Chief Bromden, who was in a deep fog. McMurphy’s
personality forced the Chief back to reality. However, McMurphy still wasn’t
allowed to watch the game. Yet, he raised the spirits of the patients and he
became somewhat of a hero to them. Soon, McMurphy comes to the realization that
the only way he was going to get out of the ward is if Nurse Ratched releases
him. Thus, he begins to obey the rules set forth by the Nurse. He also learns
that the majority of the patients were sent voluntarily to the ward. This
inspires him to destroy the fear that has entrapped the patients. McMurphy
begins by planning a fishing trip that was successful and proved to the Nurse
that these insane people were really capable of more than she gave them credit
for. McMurphy is suspicious of Chief Bromden’s deaf and dumb act and finally
breaks through to him. The Chief describes to him the Combine, which consists of
people like the Nurse, the government, and his mother. Generally anybody that
destroyed tradition, nature, and freedom. After this talk that ended the years
of silence, McMurphy makes a deal with Chief Bromden. If he grows strong enough
to break the Nurse’s control panel; McMurphy will let him go on the fishing
trip for free. McMurphy at this point has helped nearly all of the patients by
bringing them back to a more natural state of being. However,