Charlie Gordon Ignorance Is Bliss Analysis

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Charlie Gordon: Ignorance is Bliss Charlie Gordon is a 37-year-old man who has a mental disability. He was taught by Miss. Kinnian,who treats Charlie very well. He is motivated to succeed,and wants to be smart, but learning is extremely difficult for him. Miss. Kinnian had heard about a surgery that could possibly triple someone’s intelligence, so she recommended Charlie to be the subject of the operation/test. The operation was successful, but it didn’t impact Charlie the way he had been hoping for. Charlie was better off before the surgery because he was far happier and had many more friends. Firstly, he was less happy after surgery, due to him having so much to worry about. For example, when he found out his intelligence was deteriorating, …show more content…
He also had a very difficult time making friends, because his intelligence created a wedge between him and other people. “Once again now I have the feeling of shame burning inside me. This intelligence has driven a wedge between me and all the people I once knew and loved.” (Keyes 297). Charlie truly realized this when his friends Frank Reilly and Joe Carp had invited him to a party. “And all the time I was tripping because somebody’s foot was always sticking out. Then when I got up I saw the look on Joe’s face and it gave me a funny feeling in my stomack. ‘He’s a scream,’ one of the girls said. Everybody was laughing… Everyone was looking at me and laughing and I felt naked. I wanted to hide myself. I ran out into the street and I threw up.” (Keyes 292-293). At this point Charlie had truly realized he was being made fun of. Before the surgery, he didn’t realize that his friends had been making fun of him because ignorance is bliss. When you don’t know others are making fun of you, it isn’t going to affect you or hurt you …show more content…
He wanted to have lots of friends and be respected. Charlie wanted to be like other people, he didn’t want to be different. He perceived his friends Joe and Frank to be superior intellectually, and he wanted to be like them. “I cant wait to be smart like my best frends Joe Carp and Frank Reily.” (Keyes 290). In reality, his new intelligence isolated him from those he wanted to be closest to. He was intellectually superior to other people, and his interests were extremely intense. For example, he began studying equations such as, “Vrostadt’s equations of Levels of Semantic Progression.” (Keyes 298). This shows that he had progressed so far in his intelligence that it made other people uncomfortable. To conclude, Charlie Gordon in Flowers for Algernon is better off before the surgery. Charlie changed dramatically after the surgery from being a happy 37-year-old man, to being a concerned, worried, sad, and friendless human being. If Charlie had never had this surgery, he would have been far happier than he was afterward. It was very hurtful for Charlie to know that his friends had been cruel when he was smart enough to realize that he had been ridiculed by those he considered his best

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