American Psycho

American Psycho


Bret Easton Ellis

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Business Cards Symbol Icon

Business cards feature most prominently in the chapter “Pastels.” Bateman, Van Patten, Price, and McDermott are out to dinner and showing off their newest business cards to one another, obsessing over the fonts, paper color and thickness, and style of the cards. Another banker, Scott Montgomery, joins them and leaves his card, and Bateman is completely mesmerized by it. The nearly-phallic obsession with business cards and one-upping each other through them is another example of those in Bateman’s world focusing only on a shallow, materialistic valuing of other people. The person with the most well-designed business card is the person with the most value, and Bateman seems to have thought that this would be a battle he would easily win. When Bateman becomes entranced by Montgomery’s business card, however, the reader can infer a sense of insecurity on Bateman’s part, a feeling which he would never talk openly about, even directly to the reader.

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Business Cards Symbol Timeline in American Psycho

The timeline below shows where the symbol Business Cards appears in American Psycho. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Identity and Isolation Theme Icon
...Price attempts to schedule a time to play squash with Montgomery, who gives him his business card . (full context)
Materialism and Consumption Theme Icon
Identity and Isolation Theme Icon
...d’, and so to “even up the score a little bit” pulls his brand new business card from his wallet. The men are all in awe, marveling over the paper, the coloring,... (full context)
Harry’s (2)
Identity and Isolation Theme Icon
...banker. Bateman suggests that he and Owen get drinks; Owen agrees and leaves him his business card , which, to Bateman’s relief, is not as nice as his own. One of the... (full context)