You never need to wonder what she was thinking as she writes in a remarkably direct, brilliantly passionate voice. Deeply influenced by the devastation of her family during the Bolshevic revolution in Russia, Rand came to the United States as a 21-year old and brought with her a disdain for all things imposed from the outside world and developed her remarkably intense philosophy of personal choice and freedom.
In this Note, we’re not going to get into Objectivism or have a discussion about the pros and cons of Rand’s philosophy. Rather, as we always do, we’re gonna take a quick peek at some of the many Big Ideas from her seminal book, , and, most importantly, explore how we can apply these Ideas to our lives. NOW.
Before we jump in, I will offer this: for those who have not read Rand yet, focuses on the story of Howard Roark—the hero who embodies her ideals and plays with a cast of characters in a world that does anything but honor his genius. It’s a portrait of the struggle inherent to the process of embodying one’s greatness while Atlas Shrugged (a 1,000+ page magnum opus), on the other hand, focuses more on the question, “What would happen if the leaders of the industrialists went on strike?”
They’re both awesome. I highly recommend you hole yourself up for a weekend or two and get through at least one of her books if you’re feelin’ it.
For now, let’s jump in.
[Quick character overview: Roark is the hero. Dominique (named my dog after her :) is the heroine. Keating and Toohey are the anti-heroes.]
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