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Themes Essay The author of One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest Ken Kesey was deliberate in choosing which themes to include in his story Societys depiction of mental institutions as well as Keseys own experience with mental patients formed the themes of this novel A number of the themes discussed within the novel support Chief Bromdens idea of The Combine Also the idea of the abuse of power is introduced using thematic clues Kesey was sly in the delivery of such themes but quite obvious about making them known later in the story Although this novel contains several themes the major themes are sanity vs insanity women in the role of castrators oppression sexual expression humor individual vs society and the concept of freedom vs captivity In One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest the themes are delivered both deliberately and articulately Obviously one of the themes that is first introduced into the story is sanity vs insanity The idea that some of the patients at the hospital have been misdiagnosed is easily detectable For example Billy Bibbit is nothing more than a stuttering boy with low self-esteem who fears his own mother The majority of the acute patients are diagnosed with mental illness while being afflicted with everyday ailments The theme of women as castrators is first presented when RP McMurphy refers to Nurse Ratched as a ball-cutter following a group meeting The fact that several of the other patients have been damaged by relationships with women is also notable Billy not only is extremely fearful of his own mother but he is also quite afraid of Nurse Ratched for the same reason Earlier in the story Chief Bromden speaks of how his father feared his wife so that it drove him into alcoholism Humor played a large part in Randle McMurphys character throughout the story The theme of humor or the power of laughter is revealed in Part 1 by Chief Bromden He
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