Conflict In One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest

1126 Words5 Pages
Jake enters a cathedral in Bayonne and strangely begins to pray. He prays for himself, his friends, bullfighters, the siesta, the bullfights, and money. His mind drifts, and he thinks about many things like an acquaintance and a story Brett told about him. He regrets failing to be a devout Catholic and praying often. Jake is very self-aware and knows that he is a “rotten Catholic” (51) but feels “there is nothing [he] could do about it” (51), even though he easily can. He notices that his prayers are selfish and are about trivial. Inside, Jake may feel that he does not deserve happiness therefore he makes no pains to strive to achieve it. He, like Brett and the rest of his friends, is aimless and attempts to fill his life with parties and drinking. After having too many drinks, Mike castigates Cohn for his ceaseless pursuit…show more content…
Jake has constant insecurities about his impotency, a result of an explosion during the war. He believes he is less of a man than before, which, coupled with Brett’s refusal to be with him because of it, causes his to experience intense feelings of inadequacy. Mike also has several insecurities over Brett’s numerous love affairs which he is aware of and displays his insecurities by provoking Cohn on many occasions. He and Jake both gratuitously disparage Cohn so many times to rid themselves of the self-doubt they feel. Both Mike and Jake struggle with the post war anxiety which is shown through the masculinity of the woman they both love. Brett acts as a man would, and she is unbound by many societal norms that confined women then. Brett is in control of all the relationships in her life so no one can feel as though he has a significant hold over her. “I wished Mike would not behave so terribly to Cohn, though…I liked to see him hurt Cohn. I wished he would not do it, though, because after-ward it made me disgusted at myself.” (Hemingway
Open Document