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American Psycho

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Bateman's episodes of schizophrenia also shows clear signs on how he copes with being an affluent person living in a superficial world, fashioned on consumerism. The characters are predominantly concerned with material gain and superficial appearances, traits indicative of a postmodern world in which the 'surface' reigns supreme. Patrick Bateman has it all: good looks, youth, charm, a job on Wall Street, reservations at every new restaurant in town and a line of girls around the block. American Psycho begins with the words at the entrance to Dante's Hell, "scrawled in blood red lettering on the side of the Chemical Bank near the corner of Eleventh and First".

That may be a bit of a dubious distinction, but I suspect it’s one a provocateur like Ellis would embrace.The story follows the descent into total insanity of the main character and narrator, Patrick Bateman, an elite, narcissistic investment banker in Manhattan. It helped that they were able to show what Ellis could only describe, and when a work is all about superficial appearances, that’s an enormous advantage. One of his most controversy-baiting moments was with the release of 'White' in 2019, his first work of nonfiction which became a lightning rod. One of the biggest literary events of 2023 occurs today (17 January), when Bret Easton Ellis’ first novel in 13 years, 'The Shards', finally gets released.

Bateman, in his mid-20s when the story begins, narrates his everyday activities, from his recreational life among the Wall Street elite of New York to his forays into murder by night. Yet if you feel you must spend pages clarifying what you meant when you tweeted, in 2012, that Zero Dark Thirty director Kathryn Bigelow was overrated because she was “a very hot woman,” then not only are you a bland sexist, but also, and much more importantly, you kind of suck at Twitter. As described by the critic Jennifer Krause in her intertextual analysis of the novel, which relies on the work of postmodern theorist Fredric Jameson, Jameson "blames the schizophrenic's ills on the incoherence of postmodern media and capitalistic consumption". In Australia, the book is sold shrink-wrapped and is classified "R18" under national censorship legislation (i.By this, he just means Twitter, which he believes to be governed by an authoritarian conformism out to suppress true free speech. It is perfectly acceptable to bitch and moan about how the mean people didn’t like your good tweets, but there is a time and a place for such behavior, and it is not the offices of Alfred A. At the end of the story, Bateman confronts Carnes about the message he left on his machine, only to find the attorney amused at what he considers a hilarious joke.

Christian Bale modeled his brilliant performance on Tom Cruise after watching the famed Scientologist on TV with David Letterman. The Toronto Sun reported that Bernardo "read it as his 'bible '", [36] [37] though it turned out it actually belonged to his wife and accomplice Karla Homolka; it is unlikely Bernardo ever read it.

It is rare for an academic to coin a term that becomes common critical parlance, yet Chicago Professor Wayne C Booth managed just this in his 1961 book The Rhetoric of Fiction. When it was released to thundering controversy and massive hype in 1991, Bret Easton Ellis’ satirical novel American Psycho was a scandal, a pop-culture phenomenon, and a flashpoint for heated arguments about censorship, free expression, misogyny, violence, corporate responsibility, and pornography more than it was a book people might actually read and, even more improbably, enjoy. His characters are generally young vacuous people, who are aware of their depravity but choose to enjoy it. Eyes are said to be the keyhole to the soul, and by taking these away it gives a chilling image of a lack of identity. Ellis’ trademark use of cineliterate references, his nihilistic portrait of youth, and his impactfully graphic depictions of violence and eroticism are all present, as well as some not-so-veiled criticism of unchecked and vapid privilege.

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