One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest Quote Analysis

296 Words 2 Pages
Section 1
Page Range: 1-58
Dates Read: 9/12-9/20
Original Summary: Chief Bromden, a half Native American and Caucasian, is a patient in a psychiatric ward who pretends to be deaf & mute and is the narrator of the story. The psychiatric ward is overseen by Nurse Ratched, who abuses her authority, controls the ward with cruelty and perfection, and has little medical understanding. Chief recalls of Nurse Ratched’s abuse when she sent a patient to receive multiple electroshock treatments for inquiring about what was in their medicine. The wards strict, everyday routine is disrupted once Randle McMurphy, a new patient at the ward, arrives. McMurphy’s boisterous and lewd personality causes the patients to feel a change within the ward.
Quote and page number: “Oh, don’t misunderstand me, we’re not in here because we are rabbits—we’d be rabbits wherever we were—we’re all in here because we can’t adjust to our rabbithood. We need a good strong wolf like the nurse to teach us our place” (1.57-58).
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Harding means in this quote that the patients and the staff are weak and powerless, similar to rabbits. Nurse Ratched is mean and strong, she is powerful and vicious as a wolf. The patients and staff are naturally submissive and weak, and Nurse Ratched uses her manipulative personality to gain control of them and put them beneath her. I chose this quote because it shows the dynamic of the ward, the whole reason the patients and staff fear Nurse Ratched. She has mentally and physically abused them so much to the point that they themselves believe that they are weak and that they cannot stand up to

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