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Finance FictionsRealism and Psychosis in a Time of Economic Crisis$
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Arne De Boever

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780823279166

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823279166.001.0001

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Psychotic Realism in (American) Psycho

Psychotic Realism in (American) Psycho

(p.51) Two Psychotic Realism in (American) Psycho
Finance Fictions

Arne De Boever

Fordham University Press

Tracing psychosis in American Psycho back to both Alfred Hitchcock’s film Psycho and the novel Psycho (by Robert Bloch) on which it was based, the chapter shows how these fictions theorize psychosis as a general aspect of the human being’s relation to money. However, money’s psychotic effect also infects Psycho, American Psycho, and the criticism that they have received in the sense that they tend to forget about money as one of the sources of the various psychoses they describe. If Bonfire was already pretty weak on the finance, presenting itself as a big city novel and being received as a novel about race and racism in New York, American Psycho has even less finance in it. Thus, Psycho and American Psycho arguably realize the psychosis that money produces in their very cinematic and literary form. Taking its cue from the Italian literary critic and media scholar Antonio Scurati, the chapter argues that this amounts to a psychotic realism that writes money’s psychotic effect on human beings—something that is particularly important in today’s era of digitized finance.

Keywords:   Bloch, capital, finance, Harron, Hitchcock, Marx, money

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