Patrick Bateman's American Psycho

600 Words3 Pages
This abstract book is told from the perspective of Patrick Bateman. A young investment banker in the late 1980s who lives a double life as a serial killer. Bateman is utterly immoral. His main focuses in life are: getting dinner reservations at trendy restaurants, buying expensive clothes, listening to popular music, doing drugs, watching TV, having sex, and killing people. He has a circle of friends that look very similar to him, so much so, that they are often mistaken for one another. Bateman has an extreme distaste for most of humanity, many of his victims are women, homeless people, and homosexuals. He is brutal, cruel and sadistic towards his victims and he narrates his crimes in graphic detail.

American Psycho does not have a standard
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This novel is a critique of society, the 80s in particular. Bateman 's murderous rampages and occasional cannibalism are rather blunt comparisons to consumerism and consumption. The characters in this book, Bateman included, are very materialistic and self-centered. This is the author reflecting what he sees as a pervasive element lurking in society. The characters, Bateman especially, are monsters created by a culture of greed, a culture where conformity is highly valued and differences are frowned upon. A culture where people attach themselves to their social status and their commodities, thus rendering humans as commodities, who can be abused and exploited as means to an end. I feel this book has strengthened my belief in individualism and my belief that iconoclasts are sometimes the most important people in society. I also think American Psycho should be treated as a warning that a Capitalist culture can make us value objects more than people.

This leads us to what I consider the true and most frightening interpretation of American Psycho. No one cares about Bateman 's murder spree because all they care about is themselves and the immediate. As long as Bateman is not killing them, then they really don’t care what he does. In fact, Bateman is surrounded by American Psychos, who are not murderous, but are just as self-centered as he is. If I were to summarize their ethos I would quote Bateman himself: "I just remind myself that this thing, this girl, this meat, is
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