Monday, 27 January 2014

Bret Easton Ellis and Yuppie Culture

Bret Easton Ellis
An embodiment of the yuppie culture of the 1980's can be seen to exist in the work of author Bret Easton Ellis. Throughout the 80's, Ellis wrote books that expressed the vapid, self-obsessed, consumer drive of the selective class of the young wealthy professional. 

Ellis's novels were particularly important in creating an ideology of the yuppie, as his books presented an exaggerated image that became a cult symbol that simultaneously represented the image whilst also subverted it to expose a critique of both society and culture at the time. 

In turn, the books Ellis wrote became a retrospective presentation of the yuppie in the 1980's. Not necessarily accurate or factual, the novels exposed the sentiments that arose as a consequence of the selfish, consumerist attitude associated with the yuppie. Thus illustrating a divide in 1980's culture between the wealthy (the yuppie) and the rest of society. 

The extreme exaggeration that takes place within the novels conveys this sense of cultural representation, as through these amoral, deprived situations the societal opinion of the yuppie is represented. That is not to say the Ellis' work is simply a critique of the yuppie culture, this is not the case, his exploration of the cultural practice is at times flattering in its societal ennui and voyeristic appraisal of iniquitous acts.

Bret Easton Ellis' novels also convey just how relevant to 1980's culture the yuppie was, this is event in the enduring awareness of the novels themselves and the ideology they represent.

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