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ENGL 324 (22)

Crime Fiction 12

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English (Arts)
ENGL 324
Thomas Heise

Feb 10 - relationship between tom's repressed homosexuality and his amorality? - the fact that he must constantly pretend to be something that he's not for society's sake might make it easier for him to disassociate himself from his amoral acts - I don't think that the two are connected as comorbid psychopathologies would be, but that the same fundamental characteristics allow - page 40: his Aunt's mistreatment of him and his insult to his father - he can't catch up to the car, the car is always in motion - back to him being in motion and the narrative being in motion... back to pursuit: he's pursuing a particular idea of masculinity - inability to complete his goals means that he's feminine - Bateman: I'm from divorced parents, give me a break > while he's killing someone - this passage gives us some insight, but it's not the same - he claims that he's not queer, (social policing) - they're making sure that the boundary stays maintained, possibly because of the presence of same sex desire (why bother mentioning it if there isn't?) - in pursuit of a certain heteronormativity - he's interested in attaining entry into rarefied social worlds - he's trying to maintain a certain set of likes and dislikes that are appropriate for upper-class, European masculinity - not about manual labor or physical strength or skirt-chasing - different kind of expression when he's going for upper class vs. lower class - masculinity is mobile across the classes - he's looking to achieve the transformation between lower-class nobody to upper-class somebody - he's a Jamesian character - he's looking to move across social strata - he desires both to be Dickie and to be with Dickie, but he wants to be him more - he hates switching back to being Tom - in moving from America to Europe, he imagines himself as the immigrant who's leaving America to labor at remaking himself (though it's not normal labor, it's still quite ironic) - lots of self-discipline - he goes to Europe and rise in the class ladder - the fixity of European structure is what appeals to him (ironic again: most people like the fluidity of American social hierarchies, which are based on social/financial achievement, not bloodlines) - he just wants to leap into the upper class and kind of police it, looking down on others as not having the right class - on another level, it's not even that he wants to be Greenleaf, he wants to be the perfect embodiment of a wry, detached young aristocrat - one of the things he resents about Dickie is that he doesn't openly want to attain anything - he thinks that he could become a better version of Greenleaf, and in doing so become a better version of himself. but he can't be both people at once, so he has to just be Dickie - it's played out as a suicide... the police think that Ripley's been killed, as well as the metaphorical death of Tom Ripley in the water - it makes possible this better version of Tom - 76: Tom is repulsed by women specifically. he's disgusted by her peasant-like dress -
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