One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest

975 Words4 Pages
According to Mason Cooley, “What lies behind appearance is usually another appearance.” The concept Cooley is making with this statement is that the way a person appears to be is not who they truly are. People can be are wrongly perceived based on their appearance to others. The outside appearance does not reflect the true self. This concept Cooley develops can be seen throughout several works of literature and many different viewpoints. In the novel entitled, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, the author Ken Kesey expresses how various characters are inaccurately perceived by others based on the image they portray rather than who they truly are. One afternoon patients line up in front of the gray television. Instead of watching the baseball game, they listen to McMurphy tell his stories. As McMurphy shares his stories, Chief sees how zealous 1 he is telling them. Chief begins to notice McMurphy’s vulnerabilities when he states, “How could a man who looked like him paint pictures or write letters to people or be upset and worried like I saw him once when I saw him get a letter back?” (Kesey162). Throughout his profound 2 use of symbolism, Kesey demonstrates how people view McMurphy based on the image he portrays and his true self is shocking to others. Nurse Ratched tries to subjugate 4 the patients and McMurphy’s novel 5 idea to diminish 6 her power shows how tough he real is. McMurphy’s relentlessness weakens Nurse Ratched’s stringent 7 rules. The patients venerate 8 McMurphy because of the toughness he has toward Nurse Ratched. ‘Pictures and letters’ are symbolic of McMurphy’s true self. It becomes lucid 3 that McMurphy has emotions, with Kesey use of ‘upset and worried’, rather than this emotionless, tough person he is viewed as by the other characters. Chief seeing that McMurphy has weakness is perplexing to him because McMurphy has garnered 9 an image of
Open Document