Alexander CastaldoBeat Generation12/15/17    Ken Kesey’s One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest is a story revolving around “Chief” Bromden, a schizophrenic patient in a ward who pretends to be deaf and stupid. The ward is controlled by a nurse named Nurse Ratched. Nurse Ratched has a strict system of control over the ward and her patients, choosing staff members whom follow her loyally. In the ward we have two types of patients; the Acutes and the Chronics, the Acutes are those whom can still be treated and can become ‘model citizens’ while the Chronics are those who the staff believe are long past saving. Chief, the narrator is a Chronic and looks at the happenings within the ward from a passive point of view.One day, Randle McMurphy a newly admitted patient, tears up the place by introducing gambling and other ‘unsightly’ games into the ward, he does this to undermine and usurp the staff’s control and order, but in particular Nurse Ratched’s authority. This threatens her and she has a momentary break down.One can argue that threatened by the patient’s and despite her cover of control Nurse Ratched actually feels out of control inside, and with the possibility she is not so well herself. This is supported when in the book Nurse Ratched discusses with another nurse what type of person McMurphy is, she says he’s; “controlling and manipulative of others to his own ends, using others as ‘stepping stones’ to get what he wants” in this part she is really sanctimonious in her way of speech, making a show of “he acts manipulative and controlling” (Ken Kesey, 21) saying she’s above it all; “The Big Nurse tests a needle against her fingertip. “I’m afraid”—she stabs the needle down in the rubber-capped vial and lifts the plunger—”that is exactly what the new patient is planning: to take over. He is what we call a ‘manipulator,’ Miss Flinn, a man who will use everyone and everything to his own ends.”. (Ken Kesey, 21) Nurse Ratched desires power and order, and when McMurphy usurps her authority she freaks out and makes things harder for the patients, having them turn against each other, threatening them, and other difficult things, making their lives inside the ward difficult to withstand. This leads to McMurphy feeling betrayed by the other patients for not warning him how much he was risking with his rebellious nature. McMurphy:   “You let me go on hassling Nurse Ratched here, knowing how much I had to lose, and you never told me nothing.”  (Shmoop) The book suggests that for McMurphy and humanity, ignorance is the fault and fall of men. In direct contrast to ward staff members being sane and logical in their reasoning and decision making, Nurse Ratched is illogical and unreasonable in her methods of order and once her control is undermined she stops at nothing to get it back. Often disregarding her patients safety and even killing two patients indirectly, the text makes the statement that and proposes that; instead of the patients being crazy, the ward staff instead is crazy. This, goes against the traditional idea of; “poor staff members, they have to deal with these crazy patients”. Maybe that’s still the case however, the perspective from Chief Bromden provides the viewpoint of “poor patients, they have to deal with these staff members”. So depending on your view of things whether society is good depends on your perspective, because if you view it from the patient’s perspective, society is a machine making ‘model citizens’ who follow capitalism, and if you aren’t part of that you get sent into mental institutions. Out with the weird and in with the uniform and conformity. The patients are not all mentally sane, however the staff members are not far off from being similar, especially Nurse Ratched. However, by having a patient tell the story and, in essence, sing their own praises, the story clearly privileges the patients perception and perspective, insisting on the patients normalcy and their ability to tell right and wrong.  While one might ask whether the story that emerges after going through this transformation is even a true representation of the story, the story seems to reject this question altogether, insisting instead and in defiance that Nurse Ratched is mentally ill and Chief’s perspective of the story is true.