Sometimes a Great Notion Analysis

Ken Kesey

Literary Techniques

Sometimes a Great Notion is a highly complex novel in its time scheme, point of view, and imagery. The panoramic narrative begins and...

(The entire section is 626 words.)

Ideas for Group Discussions

With its epic sweep and radical experimentation with narrative techniques, Sometimes a Great Notion is not a novel easily grasped in a...

(The entire section is 428 words.)

Social Concerns

Ken Kesey's friend Ken Babbs once remarked, "A man should have the right to be as big as he feels it's in him to be." So taken was Kesey with...

(The entire section is 120 words.)


(Masterpieces of American Literature)

Brown, Chip. “Ken Kesey Kisses No Ass.” Esquire 118 (September, 1992): 158-166. Profiles Ken Kesey as a literary prankster and details his offbeat personality. Describes Kesey’s image of himself as a “magician” and the art of writing as magic. Brown’s profile gives many personal insights into Kesey’s life and writing.

Carnes, Bruce. Ken Kesey. Boise: Idaho State University Press, 1974. Provides brief biographical information and critical background to Kesey’s works.

Kesey, Ken. “Ken Kesey: The Art of Fiction CXXVI.” Interview by Robert Faggen. The Paris Review 35 (Spring, 1994):...

(The entire section is 209 words.)

Literary Precedents

Kesey's notes to Sometimes a Great Notion illuminate his literary precedents. In them he confesses that he wanted his second published...

(The entire section is 258 words.)

Related Titles

Thematically, Sometimes a Great Notion bears a close resemblance to One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest in presenting the battle...

(The entire section is 54 words.)


In 1971 a two-hour film version of Sometimes a Great Notion was released. Directed by Paul Newman, the movie had a talented cast,...

(The entire section is 85 words.)