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English Book Review 1

Title: One flew over the cuckoo's nest

Author: Ken Kesey

Editor, nr. of pages, year published: Published by 'the Penguin Group', 310 pages, first published in 1962

Summary: The scene is laid in a mental hospital. The narrator is an old Indian, called Chief Bromden, he plays deaf and dumb and he doesn't really take part in the action. The story starts when Randle Patrick McMurphy is admitted to the hospital. McMurphy is no ordinary patient, he's actually a bit too sane to be in a mental hospital. But that doesn't matter to the staff and especially Nurse Ratched, who thinks everyone in the ward should bow to her command. McMurphy is a stubborn man and doesn't feel like doing everything the 'Big Nurse' says. Throughout the whole story Nurse Ratched battles McMurphy, with her somethings ridiculous commands and McMurphy fights back by ignoring her and playing pranks on her. McMurphy tries to make the other patients revolt against the Big Nurse and her ward policy. He tries to enjoy himself and the other loons as much as possible. He even smuggles a whore onto the ward, but , as always, gets caught redhanded. In the end the Big Nurse gives the order to enter McMurphy for a lobotomy. At the very end of the book the old Indian, the narrator, has become really fed up with everything and escapes from the ward.

Discussion of main characters and physical description:

* Randle Patrick McMurphy: McMurphy is a broad, redheaded man. He doesn't take anything too seriously. He can't handle any form of authority. He always stands up for himself. His opinion won't go unheard.

* Miss Ratched: Nurse Ratched, also called the Big Nurse, is a very dominant person. She is very bossy and if she doesn't have total control, she will act out very agressive.

* Chief Bromden: The Chief is a tall Indian man.He plays dumb and deaf, but actually understands everything he wants to. He isolates himselve a lot, but McMurphy manages to get him back into 'our world'.

* The rest of the patients on the ward: The can mostly all be described as feeble minded. The can't stand up for themselves and try to avoid confrontations.

Background to the story: The story was written in the beginning of the sixties, in the USA. It reflects the feeling of the youth at the time. They felt misunderstood by the adults



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