One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

How does society view mental illness in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest? How does the medical establishment view it? Are there conflicting viewpoints expressed in the book and, if so, what are they?


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Society would rather mental illness just go away. The people who suffer from it are stigmatized and forced to live under conditions more insane than their alleged sickness. In the novel the medical establishment fails to treat patients as human. In an attempt to make these people "normal" they fry their brains until their responses conform to the standards of the one dimensional world that is held up as ideal. I think all these viewpoints are conflicting. Eccentricities, imagination and empathy all come into conflict with what our institutions deem as normal.

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