Abstract illustration of a mouse inside a white human head inside a red human head

Flowers for Algernon

by Daniel Keyes

Start Free Trial

When in Flowers for Algernon do we realize Charlie's intelligence isn't permanent?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

*I just had this thought--If you are reading this in high school, you may be reading an abridged version of the story from your literature book-- in which case, you may not have the scene with Dr. Nemur's presentation from "Progress Report 13."   Check and see if you have the full version of Keye's story or not--because it will make a difference for your answer.  

Approved by eNotes Editorial
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Charlie, and the reader as well, both begin to have an inkling that his intelligence may not be permanent as he listens to Dr. Nemur's presentation in "Progress Report 13."  Charlie even realizes that Nemur did not take into account his rapid rise in intelligence, and that now, Charlie may even regress into a lower IQ than before the experiment.  Charlie becomes so upset that he releases Algernon from his cage, and then takes the mouse with him to New York.  

Keyes also reinforces his foreshadowing as Charlie begins to take note of Algernon's agressive tendencies.  Algernon's reversion is a huge warning sign that the same fate may be in store for Charlie.  

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial