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n Journal of Literary Studies - Allegories of freedom : individual liberty and social conformity in Ken Kesey's

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Abstract

This article examines Ken Kesey's novel, <i>One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest&lt;/i&gt; (1962), not as a straightforward allegory, but as a complex series of allegories of freedom. These allegories are seen as exploring and articulating the cardinal democratic principle of individual liberty - and testing its limits - in the face of the restrictive demands of social and moral authority and conformity. The article demonstrates how the novel draws on numerous sources from the fields of politics, psychology, mythology and religion as background theories, or symbolic frameworks, or inter-textual narratives, in order to clarify and amplify its central thematic preoccupations. These sources include liberal democratic political philosophy; the humanist psychological paradigm, the psychological theories of Freud and Jung; the myth of the waste land and the legend of the Fisher King; and the story of Christ. They serve in a mutually reinforcing way not only to broaden the narrative perspective but also to affirm the validity of the book's fundamen-tal vision and message.

Hierdie artikel ondersoek Ken Kesey se roman <i>One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest</i> (1962), nie as 'n onomwonde allegorie nie, maar as 'n komplekse reeks allegorieë van vryheid. Hierdie allegorieë word beskou as dat hulle die kardinale demokratiese beginsel van individuele vryheid - ten spyte van beperkende eise van sosiale en morele outoriteit en konformiteit - eksploreer en die limiete daarvan toets. Die artikel demon-streer hoe die roman put uit vele bronne uit die politiek, die psigologie, die mitologie en die godsdiens as agtergrondteorieë, of as simboliese raamwerke, of as intertekstuele narratiewe, om sodoende sy sentrale tematiese preokkupasies te verklaar en uit te brei. Hierdie bronne sluit in die liberale demokratiese politieke filosofie; die mite van die woesteny en die legende van die Fisher King; en die verhaal van Christus. Hulle dien op 'n wederkerig-versterkende manier om nie alleen die narratiewe perspektief uit te brei nie, maar ook om die geldigheid van die boek se fundamentele visie en boodskap te bevestig.

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/content/litstud/17/1_2/EJC62327
2001-06-01
2016-12-06
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