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Flowers for Algernon introduces the reader to Charlie Gordon, a thirty-to year old boy, who will ultimately face the hardest realization ever imagined in his life. Professor Nemur and Doctor Strauss become pivotal characters to Charlie s experiment. Alice Kinnian s relationship with Charlie at first seems simple, but as Charlie becomes smarter, he suddenly realizes a desire for her other than a teacher. Donner s Bakery sets the stage for most of Charlie s adult life as a primary meeting place of interaction between people. This place also demonstrates continual abuse, first taken as only a joke but suddenly becomes insulting as Charlie realizes what has taken place. Throughout most of Charlie Gordon s life, he has been characterized as slow or learning disabled; remarkably, he overcame many obstacles like reading and writing but ultimately was still dumb.
Charlie understood that he was not like everyone else but for the most part, he felt people were just trying to poke fun at him. This attitude and desire led him to Miss Kinnian s room. He wanted to become proficient in reading and writing. One day Miss Kinnian decided that Charlie s ambitious attitude would make him be the perfect candidate for Professor Nemur and Dr. Strauss experiment at Beekman College. Charlie had always wanted to become smarter and this opportunity would be one of a lifetime, so Charlie agreed.
Consequently, the experiment had never been performed on human beings. Thus, making it extremely experimental and uncertain of the long-term effects on a human; however, Charlie was thrilled that he could become smart like other people. Charlie had a surprise that seemed to have great prospects, but really would they be so great after all. After the operation, Charlie encounters Hilda who brings up some points about the operation that may foreshadow sorrows and regrets. Hilda remarks that the operation went against God s creation that if God had wanted Charlie to be smart then he would have been. This brings an important aspect to today s world about the sheep called Dolly.
Just what exactly is science trying to do with God s creation. If God wanted all sheep to be like Dolly, I figure he would have made a million sheep just like Dolly. Professor Nemur and Dr. Strauss may be in a situation where they should leave Charlie alone because once we can create smart and dumb children with certain color hair and eyes what are we actually creating.
Lucille, Charlie s new nurse, reassures him that it probably was best for him to have had the operation and not to worry. This conflict in views represents a significant point and case scenario to the reader. Charlie is slowly remembering images then pictures of his past as a child. He had forgotten many of his memories as a child. He remembered a saying that his mom used to say to him and that was to love God and pray to him, but Charlie does not know how to pray. Burt Season, Charlie s evaluator, encourages him to continue to write down these memories in Progress Reports, so the doctors can learn about the operation.
Personality and intelligence tests are given to Charlie periodically to check his progress. One test includes a mouse named Algernon. Charlie must race against this mouse repeatedly. At first, Algernon won all the races, but gradually Charlie began to win. Seventeen years ago, Uncle Herman helped Charlie find a job at Donner s Bakery two years before he had died. His mother had him committed to Warren Home shortly after his uncle death and Mr.
Donner retrieved him from the home. There are many employees at the bakery including Joe and Frank, who Charlie feels, are his friends. For instance, Frank Reilly said what did you do open the door the hard way. That made me (laff sic). Their my friends and they really like me (page 16). Charlie s attitude consistently portrays a gentle and cordial response of any mockery.
Moreover, this demonstrates the unruly behavior of people who constantly thinks negatively about mentally disabled people. March 24, Prof. Nemur came to Charlie s room to give him a television. Nemur told Charlie that this machine would help him become smarter. Supposedly, the machine would trigger memories of his past as a kid.
The following day Charlie is kept up all night with that silly machine. Charlie begins to start to question why things are the way they are. Dr. Strauss tried to explain the conscious and the subconscious saying that the subconscious was dreaming and the conscious was what happened everyday. Joe Carp and Frank Reilly invited Charlie to go to a bar with them one night after work.
They were going to drink whiskey and have lots of fun. Joe asked Charlie to show the girls at the club how he mopped the bathroom floors. Joe and Frank made Charlie drink increasingly until he was drunk. After they were ready to leave, they asked Charlie to go around the corner to see if it was raining. Nevertheless, Charlie went around the corner and got lost.
That same night Charlie dreamed that he was in a department store and was lost. He cried and cried because he could not find his mother or father anywhere. The action at the bar helped trigger a past memory about being lost. He starts to remember about what he wanted to be when he grew up, and that was a painter.
Norma, his sister, sarcastically remarked the Charlie was going to be the artist in the family. Rose, Charlie mother, told Norma to shut-up. There seemed to have been a conflict within the family concerning Charlie and his impediment. Charlie is now beginning to realize what exactly went on during his younger years of school. One issue I feel needs to be addressed is the objective of Professor Nemur and Dr.
Strauss in the experiment. I can conclude from the remarks from the beginning of the book where Charlie is told not to tell anyone of this operation for fear of the project failing. Charlie is remember many things from his past that probably should have been left there because the information that is coming back could be detrimental toward the development of Charlie. Especially the desires of wanting to date Miss Kinnian and feel warm fuzzes about dancing with women.
These emotions could produce false hopes and mistakes toward life if this experiment is short lived. The memories of other little boys peeing on him and throwing dirt would all but make Charlie s self-esteem diminish. Charlie is gradually becoming smarter, but I worry about the long-term effects to a thirty-two year old man just now beginning to grow from nine-year old mind.
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Research essay sample on Long Term Effects Reading And Writing