Episode 67, Flowers for Algernon (Part I - Daniel Keyes: Life and Context)


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Report: March 2nd After the successes we have had with Algernon, and with much deliberation, I have officially chosen our first research subject. Charlie Gordon, 32, was recommended to us by Alice Kinian from the Beekman School for Retarded Adults and she has assured us of his desire to increase his intellect. I have scheduled for Charlie to come to the lab over the next few days where Burt Selden will run some preliminary psych tests. We are also going to test his mental flexibility with a few maze puzzles with Algernon. All that remains is the consent of a family member to grant permission for the operation. According to Alice Kinian, his sister Norma might be the most appropriate person to seek out. Providing there are no warning signs during the testing, and consent is provided, we will be on the cusp of something truly ground-breaking. All these years of hard work will be vindicated and the trust of my wife and those who fund me will have been justified. Dare I say it, I might be remembered amongst the pantheon of great scientists. Strauss has insisted that we keep a close eye on his mental state and emotional growth. I am inclined to agree but feel we cannot be held fully accountable for the man’s personality. The success or failure of this experiment will rest on his increased intelligence, or lack thereof. One thing is certain, if the experiment works, Charlie Gordon’s life will change forever. Professor Harold Nemur


Part I. Life and Context.

Part II. The Story: The Rise of Charlie Gordon.

Part III. The Story: The Fall of Charlie Gordon.

Part IV. The Meaning.

Part V. Further Analysis and Discussion.


Flowers for Algernon, Daniel Keyes (Amazon).

Algernon, Charlie, and I: A Writer’s Journey, Daniel Keyes (Amazon).

Charly (1968), Full Movie (YouTube).

195 episodes