One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest By Ken Kesey Summary and Analysis Part 1: First Time for a Long, Long Time

Summary

Chief doesn't take his sleeping pill and hallucinates about the Combine and its horrors through the night until he's awakened by Turkle, an elderly African American who works the night shift. One of the subjects of Chief's hallucination is the patient Blastic, who coincidentally dies during the night.

Analysis

Chief's hallucination takes him on a nightmarish trip to what he believes lies beneath the hospital floor. He envisions the machinery of the Combine pumping fog and eviscerating Blastic. He imagines the hospital's Public Relations man conducting a tour for school teachers and college co-eds. The Public Relations man collects trophies — body parts of the patients — and hangs them from his shirt. By this hallucination, the reader may surmise that Kesey perceives the world outside the hospital as a mechanized, conformist environment that is prepared to destroy in the most vile and despicable fashion those who dare to challenge it.

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