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

June 15, 2009
By Bailey Richards BRONZE, Homer, Alaska
Bailey Richards BRONZE, Homer, Alaska
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

Before reading One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, I had never really thought about insanity, how it is dealt with, and how it relates to ideas such as freedom and morality. In this classic novel, Ken Kesey successfully weaves a stirring message into a story that is both unsettling and thought-provoking.

The narrator, Bromden, is a patient at a cruel and oppressive insane asylum. He and his fellow patients are ruled by the iron fist of a harsh nurse who controls them by reminding them of all that is wrong with them. Nobody even considers fighting back until an unusual patient arrives: a cheerful man named McMurphy. His mini-rebellions against Nurse Ratched give the inmates hope that they can defy their oppressor and escape the prison that the hospital has become, despite their disabilities. By stepping up to the position of leader and hero to the patients, McMurphy gives the others hope and courage.

Kesey’s exploration of mental instability, sexuality, conformity, and control make this book a provocative and challenging piece of literature. Its impact is different for each reader, and the topics are intriguing. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in contemplating these controversial and at times uncomfortable issues.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest shows just how crucial one person’s optimism can be. It is a story of struggle, hope, and the faith that an individual can breed in the hearts of man. It is an amazing piece of writing and a true work of art.

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This article has 1 comment.

on Jul. 8 2009 at 2:44 am
miranda_n BRONZE, Anchorage, Alaska
3 articles 2 photos 17 comments
I have watched the movie based on this book, and while it is rare that the movie is as good as the book, I also felt the issues it covers were interesting. After reading this review, I think I shall try the book!

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