The Anatomy of a Hero
Ken Kesey, a writer and cultural hero of the psychic frontier, is best known as the author of the widely read novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. His works are set in California and Oregon, two locations representing two facets of Kesey's experience that provide the major tensions in his works. Oregon represents traditional rural family values and self-reliance inherited from Baptist pioneer stock; California is associated with the
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total nuclear destruction. Dissatisfied with the easy answers and assurances of their parents' generation, people began to explore for themselves new ways of coping with a rapidly changing world. The result was a culture of rebellion in the form of social protest. McMurphy was able to triumph over the hospital ward, Nurse Ratched, and society, by showing his fellow inmates a cure through laughter sacrificing himself as their savoir and brought them back to humanity.