One Flew over the Cuckoos Nest; Use of Characters

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One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest – Writing Assignment
In the novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Ken Kesey uses several characters to demonstrate the theme that a person must fight his fears in order to remain healthy and sane. Kesey uses the characters Billy Bibbit, Dale Harding and most importantly Chief Bromden to illustrate this theme. The first critical example that Kesey uses to emphasize the theme is Billy Bibbit. Billy is a nice young man who never mentally grew up. Billy has been dominated by his Mother throughout his whole life. Billy fears disappointing his Mother. Nurse Ratched, who is very good friends with Billy’s Mother notices this and takes advantage of this to take control over Billy when he doesn’t cooperate or when he misbehaves. A firm example of this is when Billy fooled around with Candy, who was snuck into the ward by Mcmurphy. Nurse Ratched walked in on them both naked. “`What worries me, Billy,’ she said—I could hear the change in her voice—`is how your poor mother is going to take this.’ `Duh-duh-don’t t-tell, M-M-M-Miss Ratched. Duh-duh-duh—‘” (Kesey 314) Aside from being controlled by his Mother his whole life, Billy was also born with a speech impediment, and he stutters whenever he gets nervous. Billy fears that society will never stop making fun of him for his stuttering. Due to Billy’s speech impediment, Billy has problems with girls and his confidence has been socially destroyed because of his past experiences. Billy fears that because of his speech impediment, society will never let him be happy. “And even when I pr-proposed, I flubbed it. I said ‘Huh-honey, will you muh-muh-muh-muhmuh …’ till the girl broke out l-laughing.” (Kesey 136). Billy had a hard life, and not a very long life. Later in the novel Billy killed himself by slitting his own throat with a scalpel and died in the ward; the place that he knew he would never leave. Billy couldn’t handle society anymore. Billy also committed suicide right after Nurse Ratched...
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