Using Daniel Keyes, "Flowers for Algernon". This essay shows the trouble, prejudice, and hardships that the mentally challenged face.

Essay by gotohadesHigh School, 10th gradeA-, March 2003

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Many feel that the mentally challenged are put through the many hardships of prejudice and maltreatment by people who lack the knowledge and understanding of their mental conditions. Usually what people don't know about, they consider strange or awkward and this is the case with the hardships of the mentally challenged. Prejudice, maltreatment and ignorance towards the mentally challenged are illustrated by the novel, Flowers for Algernon.

In Flowers for Algernon, Charlie Gordon, being mentally challenged, goes through many experiences when he is pre judged by many people, especially those who claim to be his friends. These 'friends' of his have the wrong ideas and wrong views when it comes to the mentally challenged. They believe that if an amputee has no limb then maybe a retard has no brain, which is completely irrelevant.

"Joe Carp said hey look Charlie had his operashun what did they do Charlie put some brains in" (Keyes, 16)

Just because someone is mentally challenged is no reason for believing that they are not capable of learning or doing anything and that is exactly what his 'friends' and many others did to Charlie.

"...I asked Joe Carp how he lerned to read and if I could lern to read to. He laffed like he always done when I said something funny and he says to me Charlie why waste your time they cant put any branes in where there aint none." (Keyes, 19)

The hardships of prejudice that are faced by Charlie in his retarded state later change the way he looks at the world in general.

Along with prejudice, Charlie, was also maltreated by his 'so-called' friends and many other people, including his own mother. Rose, Charlie's mother, wanted so much for Charlie to learn and become...