Since I have NOT seen the film The Conformist, I will write about Mr. Ripley in conjunction with Amy Robinson’s “It Takes One to Know One.”
Reading about Robinson’s construction of the “reading” triangle–the “dupe,” the “passer,” and the “in-group rep.,”– I can look at Ripley much differently as to why the main character, Tom, is so so talented. His ability not only to dupe the police of his identity but also to dupe everyone–except Jude Law and Peter–of his sexual preference is what makes him talented (“identity politics is a skill of reading” Robinson 715). It also points to Peter also being a talented reader because he, as part of the in-group of homosexuals, can read Tom’s performance and see through it, which leads to their later romantic relationship. However, I think it is interesting how the film (more literally, Tom) then punishes Peter for knowing “too” much. In order for Tom to keep up with his facade and be accepted into the upper class, he must eliminate a member of the in-group, his “Jinny” in terms of Plum Bun.
P.S. Can we please talk about what an “in-group clairvoyant” is?????