Analyzing Daniel Keyes 'Flowers For Algernon'

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Flowers for Algernon Rough Draft “Flowers for Algernon” by Daniel Keyes is about Charlie Gordon, a 37 year old who is mentally handicapped but strives to become smarter despite the challenges that are put upon him and out of his control, who is given the chance to enhance his intelligence and triple his IQ (Intelligence Quotient) of 68 through a surgery. This surgery was first performed on a mouse named Algernon, who is tested daily through mazes in order to earn food. Before the surgery was performed Charlie raced Algernon to see who could complete the maze faster and was surprised to see that he was not even smarter than a mouse. But once the operation was performed, Charlie became smarter at an increasing rate and began to see the world through a new perspective. Sudden realization hit him that the people who he once called friends weren’t laughing with him, but laughing at him. Charlie soon surpassed the intelligence of his friends, his mentors,…show more content…
This theme is to treat all equally even if they are challenged by a mental disability. This is shown many times throughout the story when Charlie begins to incline to self-awareness “I fell a few times and I couldn’t understand why because no one else was dancing besides Ellen and me. And all the time I was tripping because somebody’s foot was always sticking out” (66). He finally began to realize that his friends only liked to have him over so they could make fun of him and laugh at him because he wasn’t smart enough to realize what they were doing. “Now I know what it means when they say to pull a Charlie Gordon” (66). The story doesn’t just address the injustices that were done to Charlie, it addresses the misdeed of those who laugh at anyone with a mental disability “Shut up! Leave him alone! It’s not his fault he can’t understand! He can’t help what he is! But… he’s still a human being!”

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