Essay on Flowers For Algernon

1043 Words 5 Pages
In Daniel Keyes’ compelling novel, Flowers for Algernon, the main character undergoes both important emotional and physical changes. The book has an interesting twist, as it is described in the characters “progress reports”. This book has a science fiction undertone, and takes place in exciting New York City. As the novel begins, the main character, Charlie Jordan is thirty-two years old, but cannot remember anything from his childhood.
     Charlie Jordan words at a bakery in New York City. But there is something a little different about Charlie--he is mentally retarded. He also attends evening classes at Beckman College. Here he submits his “progress reports” to the research team at the college. In these reports
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He is upset, and even frightened, but he finds his newfound intellectual ability more thrilling and keeps working hard.
     The scientists at the lab report to Charlie that he and Algernon are to be taken to Chicago for a convention, in which the head scientist will present the findings of his team. Once they arrive, Charlie and Algernon are the prime “exhibits” and Charlie is humiliated by some remarks made. He also discovers that the researchers had not given sufficient time to verify their results of Algernon before performing the experiment on Charlie. Charlie and Algernon run away to New York, and Charlie decides his time is probably short, and begins to try and trace the reasons for his experiments’ failure. Alice and Charlie cannot overcome their problems, and she is forced to move on. He soon gets involved with Fay, his neighbor and unconventional artist. Around her, he is able to defeat his inhibitions. But as Charlie’s work becomes harder and more time constraining, they too break up.
     Algernon the mouse’s condition worsens as a whole, and he finally dies. Charlie sees this as a sigh of doom, and knows that his own time is approaching. He seeks his parents out, and meets his father, but cannot bear to introduce himself. He then meets his sister and his mother, and brags about his accomplishments, makes peace, and continues on.
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