Anonymous asked in Education & ReferenceWords & Wordplay · 1 decade ago

What does the title "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" mean?

What is the cuckoo's nest and who flew over it?

8 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The book and film of "One flew over the Cuckoo's Nest" takes place in a lunatic asylum or "Cuckoo's Nest".

    In the nursery rhyme "one flies east, one flies west, and one flies over the cuckoo's nest".

    In the story Chief Bromden and others are totally controlled by ex-army Nurse Rached. When new arrival McMurphy arrives he doesn't allow himself to be dominated but takes on Nurse Rached in a battle of wills. He flies east and she flies west.

    McMurphy wants to help the patients, especially the chief, to recover their pride and manhood from Nurse Rached. He does this with fatal consequences.

    Any story has several levels of interpretation. At the allegorical level the story mirrors the subjugation or holding down of sections of society for the comfort of those in command. One day a revolutionary leader (Martin Luther King or Pancho Villa) will arrive and attempt to set them free no matter what the consequences.

  • ?
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    One Flew over the Cuckoos Nest!

  • 1 decade ago

    The book is about an insane asylum..

    Like crazy people so

    One flew over(went into) the Cuckoo's Nest(house of crazies)

  • 1 decade ago

    To understand the significance of the title of the novel ‘One flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ brainstorm everything you know about Cuckoos. For example, the fact that they don’t build their own nest, they kick out the other chicks when they are born, they are fed by a bird who is not their real mother. Can they see how this relates to the novel?

    The title is clearly allegorical in its intent. The “cuckoo’s nest” is the hospital, and the one who “flew over” it is McMurphy. The full nursery rhyme is quoted in Part 4 by the chief, as he remembers his childhood while awaking from a shock treatment. It was part of a childhood game played with him by his Indian Grandmother:

    Ting. Tingle, tingle, tremble toes, she’s a good fisherman, catches hens, puts ‘em inna pens…wire blier, limber lock, three geese inna flock…one flew east, one flew west, one flew over the cuckoo’s nest…O-U-T spells out…goose swoops down and plucks you out.

    You should try to work out who the characters in the rhyme relate to in the novel. It is also worth mentioning at this point the symbolism of birds which runs throughout the novel.

    Try to link to Chief and McMurphy, the goose who flies over the cuckoo’s nest is McMurphy, the “chief bullgoose loony”; the one he “plucks out” is the chief, who escapes at the end of the novel following McMurphy’s teaching.

    In the line “Tingle, tingle tremble toes” is clearly the Big Nurse, who catches the inmates like hens and encourages them to peck one another to death in the “pen” of the ward, where they are kept locked in. That she is “a good fisherman,” a “fisher of men,” recalls McMurphy’s fishing expedition and its symbolic overtones linking McMurphy with Christ, but her purpose is to imprison, rather than to liberate, her catch.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    one flew over the cuckoo's nest means one person escaped the insane asylum.. the indian escaped the cuckoos nest/mental institution because in the end he runs away from it

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    it is absolutely one of the best novels i've ever read. if you haven't read it, i highly recommend it. it's by ken kesey, one of the original 'merry pranksters.' (for more on him, read 'the electric kool-aid acid test' - another great book!)

    anyway, the cuckoo's nest refers to the mental institution where the story takes place. 'one flew over' refers to the main protagonist, 'r. p. mcmurphy.' he's a rebellious spirit who refuses to buckle under the rules, assiduously observed and applied by the head nurse, nurse ratchet, and is a constant source of free-thinking activity in violation of said rules. ultimately, mcmurphy is 'tamed' (i won't reveal how - i'm not a 'spoiler') and the loss of his freedom and lively ways and happiness is very sad - yet it serves to 'free' another inmate.

    mcmurphy is the one (the 'soul' or 'spirit') who 'flies over' the mental institution. his persona becomes uplifting, enlightening, freeing - much as a bird might inspire others to fly.

    it's a very brief synopsis, but i hope it helped.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is a novel by Ken Kesey, but it is also a movie. If you would like a summary of the book go here: (this is a good website because you can browse the summary by chapter) and if you would like a movie summary go here:

    Hope this helps!

    Source(s): Internet
  • 6 years ago

    Nothing can chain the freedom of the spirit ! Even the death is a means to achieve the dignity of the freedom of the spirit!

    Rev.Benedict Thyagarajan

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