American author Ken Kesey thought himself as the link between the Beat Generation of the 1950s and the hippies of the 1960s. He is best known for his novel “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”, published in 1962.
His motivation into writing this book came after he volunteered to be part of a secretive CIA-financed study that looked at the affects of psychoactive drugs, while working as a night aide in a veteran’s hospital.
Set almost entirely in an Oregon State mental hospital, patients and doctors alike are strictly ruled by the mostly cruel and repressive “Big Nurse” Ratched.
Patients are kept under control through uncompromising routine, brain-deadening medication and electroshock therapy threats. That is…until McMurphy comes along and tries to undo everything Nurse Ratched has built up over the years. Will the other patients such as Chief Bromden follow suit or are they forever condemned to be a ghost of their true selves?
It was made into a successful film in 1975 starring Jack Nicholson that won five Academy Awards. Even though Kesey was initially involved in creating the film, he soon left its production after varying disagreements.