One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest

This story is told from the perspective of a massive Red Indian in a mental institution in the USA. He pretends to be deaf and dumb to avoid interaction with the staff, but speaks again to the new arrival, McMurphy. McMurphy starts a battle of wills with the head nurse of the ward. She is obsessed with controlling the ward and its inmates, and this grates with McMurphy's free spirit. The book was written in the 60's and deals with society forcing people to conform.
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The review of this Book prepared by John Samson

To escape confinement in jail, Randall P. McMurphy feigns insanity. He thinks that completing his sentence in the comparatively freer environment of a state mental institution will be easier, if not much more pleasant. However, he has not counted upon “Big Nurse” Ratchet and her sadistic orderlies. When McMurphy, to counter the daily boredom of the institution's routine, becomes a leader among the ambulatory mental patients and challenges Nurse Ratchet's authority, he sets himself up for a long battle of escalating intensity that leads to his eventual downfall. However, McMurphy's indomitable will, love for liberty, and courageous rebellion against the tyranny of an arbitrary and abusive authority inspires “Big Chief” Bromden to escape from the institution and start a new life.
The review of this Book prepared by Gary L. Pullman

This absolutely wonderful novel takes readers on a tour of a 1950's mental hospital, through the eyes and mind of a perennial patient at that mental hospital. With delicately placed, poignant humor and mountains of pathos, the novel's burly, Irish-American protagonist, McMurphy, struggles with those supervising him and the other mistreated patients in the facility. The protagonist's struggle ultimately transcends a medical practicioner vs. patient level and becomes a tooth-and-nail fight for McMurphy's honor and even his mind.
The review of this Book prepared by Richard Brear, M.A.

Told from the viewpoint of a mentally troubled and supposedly deaf and dumb half-Indian,"One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" depicts the atrocious state of affairs in a state-run mental institution circa 1960. The patients of the institution are a hodge-podge of mental deviants whose lives are terrorized on a daily basis by the head nurse of the unit on which they dwell. She is a despicable creature named Nurse Ratched, a domineering, evil woman who wants to dictate every facet of their lives. Their outlook is bleak until a free-spirited new patient, a coarse, obscene Irishman named McMurphy arrives and embarks on a crusade to restore a little dignity to their lives. What befalls him along the way is nothing less than a tragedy. A great book!
The review of this Book prepared by Bill Brumlow

Chapter Analysis of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   thoughtful Time/era of story    -   1960's-1970's Life of a profession:    -   mental patient Internal struggle/realization?    -   Yes Struggle over    -   vague finding self/purpose in life (i.e. no plot to book) Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Battle with a psychiatrist    -   Yes Job/Profession/Status story    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   accused criminal Age:    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Nationality    -   White (American)


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   5 () United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Pacific NW

Writing Style

Sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   vague references only Lot of foul language?    -   Yes Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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