American Psycho 2

What drives Patrick Bateman to kill (or to fantasize about killing)? What does he get out of it? In the last 30-50 pages of the novel, most or all of the explicit violence ends. How do these pages help to explain the reasons for Bateman’s violent acts (or fantasies)?

American Psycho 1

American Psycho is, at least in part, a parody of the manners of affluent young professionals in  NYC. What is one moment you found funny and why? If you found not a single moment amusing, why do you think that is? A failure in the novel? Your incapacity to see the humor? The general offensiveness of much of the language and action in the book?

The Silence of the Lambs 2

Last time, we just started to think about the ways in which Lecter offers us a particular imagining of the Psychiatrist born, in part, from the anti-psychiatry movement of the 60s and 70s.  Chilton also offers a portrait of the professionally trained therapist.  How would you say one or both of these doctors  presents the profession to readers of the novel?

The Silence of the Lambs 1

We’ll talk, of course, about Hannibal Lecter and the asylum he inhabits, but how would you characterize the world outside of the asylum in 1986 as Harris portrays it?  Name and describe one or two of the most salient features (emotional, physical, or cultural) that seem to define life in this fictional world.  Where’s the passage where this feature came into view?

Girl, Interrupted

Though not initially aimed at teenagers, a massive “young adult” audience, among other readers, turned Girl, Interrupted into a monumental bestseller. What are some of the central features of adolescence in American culture? How do you think the book understands this period in life? Is the young Kaysen pathological, unusual, typical or something else entirely?