Fight Club and the Disenchanted Middle Class

fight clubIn the “Afterword” to the book, which I can’t believe I am just now reading (I’ve read and enjoyed others of his, and this was one of my favorite movies of all time), Palahniuk talks about the making of the book and the environment leading up to its creation.  Specifically, he says in part:

“Before the students of Brigham Young University fought for their right to beat one another on Monday nights, insisting there was nothing in Mormon law that prohibited their ‘Provo Fight Club…’ ”  Wait, what?  I was at BYU right around this time, saw this movie (for the first time) right around that time, and while the movie spoke to me, I had no idea it had such widespread appeal among that set.  And now I’m extremely curious as to why that is/was.

The movie resonated with me then (late 90s, very early 2000s), but parts of it very much resonate with me still.  Like the paragraph in Chapter 19, where the mechanic, channeling Tyler Durden, says:

You have a class of young strong men and women, and they want to give their lives to something.  Advertising has people chasing cars and clothes they don’t need.  Generations have been working in jobs they hate, just so they can buy what they don’t really need.

Um, hello.  This resonates more with me now than it did back then.  As does the idea that:

We are the middle children of history, raised by television to believe that someday we’ll be millionaires and movie stars and rock stars, but we won’t.  And we’re just learning this fact.  So don’t f%#$ with us.

As does the general idea throughout that, big picture, we live our lives to own this stuff that ends up owning us.

Lots here.  Lots to think about.  I know the first rule is that you don’t talk about it, but I really, really, really, want to fight…

2 thoughts on “Fight Club and the Disenchanted Middle Class

  1. My perhaps favorite part of the book is that it started out as a short story he wrote while disgruntled at work. It reminds me of the best and really only interesting part of Po Bronson’s book “What Should I Do With My Life?” In the first chapter, he talks about how he used to have this corporate job that he hated. So instead of doing the job, he started this company where he would make disgruntled employee greeting cards, at work, fueled by his frustration with the job. The card company was even successful for a while. Hilarious! Work-related animosity and frustration can be a powerful motivator.

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