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Journalism & Communication
Pages 3 (753 words)
Sigmund Freud is well-remembered by history not for coming up with the right answers—his theories have not stood the test of time well—but for asking the right questions.
For a long time, mental handicaps were seen as completely insurmountable, just something that nobody could engage with or do anything about. In the 20th century, though, that began to change. The notion that mental illness was treatable began to become widespread, and mental hospitals because places of treatment rather than mere confinement. A good example of the changing attitudes is the 1975 film One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, based on Ken Kesey’s 1962 novel of the same title. In it, Randle McMurphy, played by Jack Nicholson, is transferred from prison to a mental institution, where he challenges the way the institution is run. Prior to his arrival, the institution is essentially a holding pen, a place where people are kept because society doesn’t want to deal with them. There is no real expectation that anyone ever will, or ever can, leave the institution or be cured of their problems. Indeed, McMurphy initially goes there because he thinks it will be an easier place than prison to serve out the remainder of his sentence, only to discover that one he’s in the institutional system, he can be kept there indefinitely against his will. However, by engaging with the other patients as human beings, McMurphy challenges the authority of the institutional system. ...
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