One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest Literary Analysis Paper One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest, Ken Kesey

Essay by kerridethHigh School, 12th gradeB, May 2005

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One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest Literary Analysis Paper

Randle McMurphy fits the profile of a tragic hero based on the analysis of certain literary elements. McMurphy's major flaw was hubris which leads to his downfall in life as well as the lives of others in the novel. After closely reading Ken Kesey's One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest, it is apparent that McMurphy is a tragic hero.

Kesey uses narration in the first person in One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest. This helps to show the perspective of life on the ward from a patient. The story is told by the Chief which helps to characterize McMurphy as he is seen by the patients of the ward. The perspective from the Chief shows the fears and insecurities that the patients have that McMurphy doesn't recognize. The Chief stated how McMurphy was ignorant to the patient's feeling and mental health: "That's what McMurphy can't understand, us wanting to be safe.

He keeps trying to drag us out of the fog, out in the open where we'd be easy to get at" (page 114)..."why don't he leave me be?" (Page 123). McMurphy's hubris is displayed here. His arrogance and pride got the best of him; he failed to recognize that the patients were not like him; not mentally as strong. He tried to get the patients to stand up for themselves and act like men. He treated them and talked to them as if they were normal. McMurphy is going against nature, going against the will of the gods because the men are not normal, they are not meant to be treated normally. It is as if he is deciding against their fate and trying with all his might to change their destiny. The Chief's perspective shows just how...



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