⒈ Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem
Such is the meaning of the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Major Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem and Libertarian Thinkers series. This estimate is shared Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem by many who Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem her conclusions and her criticisms of contemporary culture, morality, and politics original and insightful. Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem [man] chooses to Case Study: Consider The Crown, a rational ethics will tell him what Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem of action are required to implement his choice. Rand claimed to be a philosopherthough she preferred the Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem " Objectivist. Perceptual error, Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem, is not possible.
Anthem: The Graphic Novel
Philosophical aspirations, novels, and a manifesto of sorts For The New Intellectual soon followed. Her work champions a pseudo-philosophy she labels "Objectivism," glorifies the preeminence of the individual's self-serving whim, condemns inhabitants of Africa and Asia as "savages", derides the failure of the modern "intellectual" to wholeheartedly endorse laissez-faire capitalism , disastrously misunderstands the meaning of the term " altruism ", and, what is more, paints in dripping shades of unintended irony a portrait of an envisaged utopia not far removed from the authoritarian dystopia she fled in her youth.
How her work appeared consistent inside her head is anyone's guess. Talk show host Dick Cavett once commented on why he turned down an interview with Ayn Rand on his show: . Rand had an acknowledged open relationship with husband Frank O'Connor, and with her closest "pupil," Nathaniel Branden, from into the s. This Canadian psychotherapist is best known today as the father of the self-esteem movement. What isn't so well known about his seminal book about his theories, The Psychology of Self-Esteem , is that many of the chapters in the book are merely fleshed-out versions of columns that Branden had written for Rand's newsletter over the previous 18 years, even though he said as much in his autobiography.
She justified her affair with nonsense, but when Branden was caught sleeping with a model and used the same justification, she beat the shit out of him, shut down her schools because this guy funded it , and generally went off the deep end. She allegedly said, "If you have an ounce of moral decency , you'll be impotent for the rest of your life! Branden later apologized for his part in "contributing to that dreadful atmosphere of intellectual repressiveness that pervades the Objectivist movement. While working as a screenwriter, Rand alerted her supervisors to subtle pro-Soviet messages being snuck into mass entertainment. The first public cause to which Rand donated her own money was the state of Israel.
For all her iconoclasm, her philosophy leaves intact the entire edifice of Protestant morality , but lops the head God off and calls it an exercise in rationality. Rand, an atheist , took a dislike to the religious right and its grinning avatar, Ronald Reagan. She was not a force for feminism, either. Her interview with Phil Donahue is a classic: she gets asked point-blank if she would ever vote for a female president, and she straightforwardly answers that she would not, under any circumstances.
While we're on that topic, Rand had a really odd fixation with women's bodies and overtly feminine appearance, hence the boy haircuts. In her earlier novels whenever she wants to shorthand that a woman is average and dumb and a commie she just writes that she has big tits. Or if she wants to shorthand that a man is average and dumb and a commie she writes that his wife has big tits. When a noted economist relayed through a third party that she "reasoned like a man", she replied "Really?! He said those exact words? Rand fiercely opposed all types of Social Security , including Medicare, of which she and her husband were willing recipients. A smoker for most of her life, she derided the anti-smoking lobby.
She underwent surgery for lung cancer in and died of heart failure in A small price to pay for euphoria. While Rand considered her philosophies to be so well-reasoned as to be completely objective and even called her philosophy Objectivism , it is generally agreed  that what she really created was a highly moralistic personality cult, which was later complete with shunning of dissenters and highly screwed-up sexual politics. Detractors feel that Rand considered all those properties to be perfectly expressed in herself. Whatever the case may be, Objectivism is essentially libertarianism with hangups, usually disguised as pseudologic. Most philosophers today would dispute Randroid claims that Rand is a philosopher of any importance.
The reason is simple: neither Rand's metaphysics nor her epistemology answer many of the probing questions that philosophers might demand of it. Rand's metaphysics boil down to platitudinous pieties: "Existence exists," "Existence is identity," that consciousness is relational, nothing exists without having some properties and the law of identity applies "A is A". These are all perfectly fine positions to which there are no fundamental objections, but they don't seem to go far enough to satisfy the inquiries of even the most minimally trained student: for instance, Rand's view seems to be incompatible with the traditional Aristotelian substance-attribute view of the relationship between particulars and properties.
Similarly, 'identity' as it is used by Rand seems to shift meanings often - between the sort of meaning one might use when describing Leibniz 's law of the identity of indiscernibles and the day-to-day meaning 'my identity' etc. Similarly, for Rand's epistemology — she claims that " reason " is the foundation. Despite the label, Rand's epistemology is empiricist. The sort of questions which exercise contemporary epistemologists to pick a few: resolving Gettier problems, weighing up foundationalism and coherentism as a response to the Agrippan trilemma, the closure principle are given scant attention in Rand. Rand claims that all of the elements of her philosophy run together — being an Objectivist means accepting all of the five components of the philosophy.
Quite what in the perfectly acceptable, if a little unoriginal, metaphysics and epistemology reality is all there is, don't bother with belief necessitates acceptance of the ethics and political philosophy , or indeed the aesthetic worship of railway tycoons and large, phallic buildings, is never explained. The existence of many millions of non-Objectivists who hold without too much of a mental struggle either to a broadly naturalistic metaphysics and epistemology without the Randian ethic, or to a Randian or libertarian ethic and a non-naturalistic metaphysics perhaps some kind of religion , orthodox or New Agey , seems to suggest that the two halves of Rand's philosophy aren't bound by necessity.
This seems rather obvious to anyone with a brain , but does bear repeating for the Randroids, who seem to think that anyone objecting to their politics is automatically rejecting all components of their worldview. As many of Rand's followers have demonstrated, taking the Objectivist philosophy to its logical conclusions often leads to conflicts with mainstream science. In the late s, Ayn became a passing groupie of sorts for murderer and fraud William Edward Hickman , who was known for kidnapping and brutally dismembering a year-old girl.
He has the true, innate psychology of a Superman. Howard Roark, the "hero" of her later novel, The Fountainhead , was described in a similar manner. It is the philosophy of the criminally insane Rules do not apply to me ; you might not agree with the underlying rule system, but there is no existential debate about it. The government is real, society is real and it is only a dogmatic delusion to bother questioning this fact. If you got more than two right, congratulations, you're now ready to advance to Austrian Economics - Institutionalizing Your Own Sociopathy.
Her philosophy is sort of a photonegative of Leninism. If Lenin believed that capitalist exploitation of the farmers and workers of the world is killing them, then Rand says that capitalists producing value is the only thing keeping the farmers and workers of the world alive. If the Communist ideal is collective ownership, then Rand is going to say that there is no such thing as society, only individuals.
It's possible Ayn herself was aware of this: in an equivalent of Lenin, Galt spends an exhaustive 12 years hiding from the police and building his spy network. Here's the funny thing, though: in Atlas Shrugged you have a small group of men in charge of the whole economy. They are above the law, they can even kill those who stand in their way so long, as the phrase goes, as the trains run on time. Which, of course, is similar to how the Soviets ran their economy. She just replaced Politburo-appointed apparatchiks with strong-jawed Captains of Industry. If there was a summary of Russian history thrown into one sentence, this would be it.
The only way to maintain an empire as large as Russia since the Mongols conquered it was to appoint a " strong man " which usually implied an extremely brutal person , even if that wasn't the end-goal. Actually reading this novel has been compared to pushing one's head through a light-year of refrigerated saltwater taffy sort of like a libertarian Das Kapital , but for the fact Ayn Rand hated libertarians .
To save you reading over a thousand pages of turgid prose, here is Atlas Shrugged , abridged no "spoiler" alert is necessary :. Critics condemned it for 1 its abhorrent message, 2 its flimsy literary style, and 3 the fact that it is an objectively bad novel. See what we did there? A number of conservatives apparently hold Atlas Shrugged in high regard, which is strange, since they've already got a foundational text that is even longer and almost as preachy. Rush Limbaugh frequently refers to it. The book probably would have been much shorter if ol' Ayn had laid off the bennies. The book's film adaptation languished in Hollywood development hell for decades, at one point attracting Angelina Jolie, before being made at an obviously low budget in The filmmakers, not appreciating just how awful the book is, had the audacity to divide it into a trilogy.
Part 1 was released in , playing to small audiences in a small number of theaters; Part 2 followed in , to coincide with the US election , and fared even less well; Part 3 came in September The movies have been predictably popular with hardcore Randroids,   panned by film critics,   and were either ignored or went unnoticed by the wider public. That they're so long, so god-awful boring, and so utterly insignificant probably diminishes any real need to dissect the blatant anti-Semitism and sexism on screen.
Don't believe us? It's ironic that the third part of the film trilogy  was funded by a Kickstarter campaign. Rand wrote in The Meaning of Money , "Money is not the tool of the moochers, who claim your product by tears , or of the looters, who take it from you by force. Its message is to stick to your guns if you're a genius, and even though the roofs on your houses leak terribly or the decks bend,  the fools who dissed you will eventually see the glory in your accomplishments. Books that actually admit to being about Wright are better, since they usually include photos and drawings of his work. Hardcore Randroids and Yankee fans the film starred Gary Cooper are probably the only ones who can find anything decent to say about the movie.
Adam Lee of Daylight Atheism has done a critical reading of this one as well talk about sacrifices for the common good. In The Fountainhead , Rand displays a disturbing point of view on the subject of consent. Eyes wide in terror, struggling to get away, and biting him hard enough to draw blood are apparently signs that she secretly wants it. Given that most of the sex scenes in Rand's work tends to involve some violence with the woman being rather unsure about whether she actually wants to have sex, it is almost a certainty that Rand was incorporating her own personal fetish. It's slightly hard to read because the main character refers to himself and pretty much everyone else with plural pronouns for nearly the entire book.
The book ends with a long, philosophical speech from the main character, much like though much shorter than John Galt's in Atlas Shrugged. Of course, many versed in Russian literature will tell you that Anthem is a direct ripoff of the first great dystopia , Yevgeny Zamyatin's We  but then, so is Nineteen Eighty-Four to a much lesser extent. It also inspired the Rush album , which drummer and lyricist Neil Peart credited in the original liner notes to "the genius of Ayn Rand," although it is worth noting that later in his life Peart said that although Rand's ideas were of some use at the time, "the extent of my influence by the writings of Ayn Rand should not be overstated.
I am no one's disciple. This led to Rand's first public speaking experiences; she enjoyed fielding sometimes hostile questions from New York City audiences who had seen pro-Willkie newsreels. She became friends with journalist Henry Hazlitt , who introduced her to the Austrian School economist Ludwig von Mises. Despite her philosophical differences with them, Rand strongly endorsed the writings of both men throughout her career, and both of them expressed admiration for her.
Mises once referred to her as "the most courageous man in America", a compliment that particularly pleased her because he said "man" instead of "woman". Rand questioned her about American history and politics long into the night during their many meetings, and gave Paterson ideas for her only non-fiction book, The God of the Machine. Rand's first major success as a writer came in with The Fountainhead , a romantic and philosophical novel that she wrote over seven years. Twelve publishers rejected it before the Bobbs-Merrill Company finally accepted it at the insistence of editor Archibald Ogden, who threatened to quit if his employer did not publish it. The Fountainhead became a worldwide success, bringing Rand fame and financial security. Producer Hal B. Wallis hired her afterwards as a screenwriter and script-doctor.
Rand extended her involvement with free-market and anti-communist activism while working in Hollywood. She became involved with the anti-Communist Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation of American Ideals and wrote articles on the group's behalf. She also joined the anti-Communist American Writers Association. After several delays, the film version of The Fountainhead was released in Although it used Rand's screenplay with minimal alterations, she "disliked the movie from beginning to end" and complained about its editing, the acting and other elements. Following the publication of The Fountainhead , Rand received numerous letters from readers, some of whom the book had influenced profoundly.
Initially, the group was an informal gathering of friends who met with Rand at her apartment on weekends to discuss philosophy. Later, Rand began allowing them to read the drafts of her new novel, Atlas Shrugged , as she wrote the manuscript. Published in , Atlas Shrugged was considered Rand's magnum opus. The plot involves a dystopian United States in which the most creative industrialists, scientists, and artists respond to a welfare state government by going on strike and retreating to a hidden valley where they build an independent free economy. The novel's hero and leader of the strike, John Galt , describes it as "stopping the motor of the world" by withdrawing the minds of the individuals contributing most to the nation's wealth and achievements.
With this fictional strike, Rand intended to illustrate that without the efforts of the rational and productive, the economy would collapse and society would fall apart. The novel includes elements of mystery , romance, and science fiction,   and contains an extended exposition of Objectivism in a lengthy monologue delivered by Galt. Despite many negative reviews, Atlas Shrugged became an international bestseller,  however, the reaction of intellectuals to the novel discouraged and depressed Rand. Collective members gave lectures for the NBI and wrote articles for Objectivist periodicals that Rand edited. She later published some of these articles in book form.
Rand was unimpressed by many of the NBI students  and held them to strict standards, sometimes reacting coldly or angrily to those who disagreed with her. Some described the NBI or the Objectivist movement as a cult or religion. Some of her followers mimicked her preferences, wearing clothes to match characters from her novels and buying furniture like hers. Throughout the s and s, Rand developed and promoted her Objectivist philosophy through her nonfiction works and by giving talks to students at institutions such as Yale , Princeton , Columbia ,  Harvard , and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. These included: supporting abortion rights,  opposing the Vietnam War and the military draft but condemning many draft dodgers as "bums" ,   supporting Israel in the Yom Kippur War of against a coalition of Arab nations as "civilized men fighting savages",   saying white colonists had the right to invade and take land inhabited by American Indians ,   and calling homosexuality "immoral" and "disgusting", while also advocating the repeal of all laws concerning it.
In , Nathaniel Branden began an affair with the young actress Patrecia Scott , whom he later married. Nathaniel and Barbara Branden kept the affair hidden from Rand. When she learned of it in , though her romantic relationship with Branden had already ended,  Rand ended her relationship with both Brandens, and the NBI was closed. Rand underwent surgery for lung cancer in after decades of heavy smoking. Rand described her approach to literature as " romantic realism ".
Her fiction typically has protagonists who are heroic individualists, depicted as fit and attractive. Rand often describes them as unattractive and they sometimes have names that suggest negative traits, like Wesley Mouch in Atlas Shrugged. Rand considered plot a critical element of literature,  and her stories typically have what biographer Anne Heller described as "tight, elaborate, fast-paced plotting". In the introduction she wrote for an English-language edition of his novel Ninety-Three , Rand called him "the greatest novelist in world literature". Although Rand disliked most Russian literature, her depictions of her heroes show the influence of the Russian Symbolists  and other nineteenth-century Russian writing, most notably the novel What Is to Be Done?
This is most apparent in We the Living , set in Russia. The ideas and rhetoric of Ellsworth Toohey in The Fountainhead  and the destruction of the economy by the looters in Atlas Shrugged also reflect it. Rand's descriptive style echoes her early career writing scenarios and scripts for movies; her novels have many narrative descriptions that resemble early Hollywood movie scenarios. They often follow common film editing conventions, such as having a broad establishing shot description of a scene followed by close-up details, and her descriptions of women characters often take a " male gaze " perspective.
Rand called her philosophy "Objectivism", describing its essence as "the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute". In metaphysics, Rand supported philosophical realism and opposed anything she regarded as mysticism or supernaturalism, including all forms of religion. In epistemology, she considered all knowledge to be based on sense perception, the validity of which Rand considered axiomatic ,   and reason, which she described as "the faculty that identifies and integrates the material provided by man's senses".
In ethics, Rand argued for rational and ethical egoism rational self-interest , as the guiding moral principle. She said the individual should "exist for his own sake, neither sacrificing himself to others nor sacrificing others to himself". Rand's political philosophy emphasized individual rights —including property rights. She considered laissez-faire capitalism the only moral social system because in her view it was the only system based on protecting those rights. She worked with conservatives on political projects, but disagreed with them over issues such as religion and ethics.
In aesthetics, Rand defined art as a "selective re-creation of reality according to an artist's metaphysical value-judgments". She considered romanticism to be the approach that most accurately reflected the existence of human free will. Rand said her most important contributions to philosophy were her "theory of concepts, ethics, and discovery in politics that evil—the violation of rights—consists of the initiation of force".
If one recognizes the supremacy of reason and applies it consistently, all the rest follows. Rand's ethics and politics are the most criticized areas of her philosophy. O'Neill, in some of the earliest academic critiques of her ideas,  said she failed in her attempt to solve the is—ought problem. Multiple critics, including Nozick, have said her attempt to justify individual rights based on egoism fails. Branden said this emphasis led her to denigrate emotions and create unrealistic expectations of how consistently rational human beings should be. Except for Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas and classical liberals , Rand was sharply critical of most philosophers and philosophical traditions known to her.
I devised the rest of my philosophy myself. In an article for the Claremont Review of Books , political scientist Charles Murray criticized her claim that her only "philosophical debt" was to Aristotle. He asserted her ideas were derivative of previous thinkers such as John Locke and Friedrich Nietzsche. In , she alluded to his idea of the " superman " in notes for an unwritten novel whose protagonist was inspired by the murderer William Edward Hickman. Rand considered her philosophical opposite to be Immanuel Kant , whom she referred to as "the most evil man in mankind's history";  she believed his epistemology undermined reason and his ethics opposed self-interest.
The first reviews Rand received were for Night of January 16th. Reviews of the Broadway production were largely positive, but Rand considered even positive reviews to be embarrassing because of significant changes made to her script by the producer. Overall, they were more positive than those she received for her later work. Rand's first bestseller, The Fountainhead , received far fewer reviews than We the Living , and reviewers' opinions were mixed.
Other negative reviews called the characters unsympathetic and Rand's style "offensively pedestrian". Atlas Shrugged was widely reviewed, and many of the reviews were strongly negative. He accused Rand of supporting a godless system which he related to that of the Soviets , claiming, "From almost any page of Atlas Shrugged , a voice can be heard, from painful necessity, commanding: 'To a gas chamber—go! Rand's nonfiction received far fewer reviews than her novels. The tenor of the criticism for her first nonfiction book, For the New Intellectual , was similar to that for Atlas Shrugged. On the th anniversary of Rand's birth in , writing for The New York Times , Edward Rothstein referred to her written fiction as quaint utopian "retro fantasy" and programmatic neo-Romanticism of the misunderstood artist, while criticizing her characters' "isolated rejection of democratic society".
With over 30 million copies sold as of [update] , Rand's books continue to be read widely. Rand's Atlas Shrugged was the second most popular choice, after the Bible. Rand provided a positive view of business and subsequently many business executives and entrepreneurs have admired and promoted her work. Television shows including animated sitcoms, live-action comedies, dramas, and game shows, as well as movies and video games have referred to Rand and her works. Jibes at Rand as cold and inhuman run through the popular culture.
Rand's works have found a foothold in classrooms. Although she rejected the labels "conservative" and "libertarian",   Rand has had a continuing influence on right-wing politics and libertarianism. The political figures who cite Rand as an influence are usually conservatives often members of the Republican Party ,  despite Rand taking some atypical positions for a conservative, like being pro-choice and an atheist. Buckley Jr. The financial crisis of — spurred renewed interest in her works, especially Atlas Shrugged , which some saw as foreshadowing the crisis. Critics blamed the economic crisis on her support of selfishness and free markets , particularly through her influence on Alan Greenspan. During Rand's lifetime, her work received little attention from academic scholars.
Rasmussen defended her positions, but described her style as "literary, hyperbolic and emotional". The Philosophic Thought of Ayn Rand , a collection of essays about Objectivism edited by Den Uyl and Rasmussen, was the first academic book about Rand's ideas published after her death. Heyl described a divergence in how different academic specialties viewed Rand. She said that Rand's philosophy "is regularly omitted from academic philosophy.
Yet, throughout literary academia, Ayn Rand is considered a philosopher. He said most commentators view her ethical argument as an unconvincing variant of Aristotle's ethics, and her political theory "is of little interest" because it is marred by an "ill-thought out and unsystematic" effort to reconcile her hostility to the state with her rejection of anarchism. Bradford , Stephen D. Cox , and Chris Matthew Sciabarra were its founding co-editors.
In a essay for the Cato Institute, libertarian philosopher Michael Huemer argued very few people find Rand's ideas convincing, especially her ethics. He attributed the attention she receives to her being a "compelling writer", especially as a novelist, noting that Atlas Shrugged outsells Rand's non-fiction works and the works of other philosophers of classical liberalism. Academic consideration of Rand as a literary figure during her life was even more limited than the discussion of her philosophy. Mimi Reisel Gladstein could not find any scholarly articles about Rand's novels when she began researching her in , and only three such articles appeared during the rest of the s.
After the closure of the Nathaniel Branden Institute, the Objectivist movement continued in other forms. In the s, Leonard Peikoff began delivering courses on Objectivism. In , Peikoff worked with businessman Ed Snider to establish the Ayn Rand Institute , a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting Rand's ideas and works. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Russian-American writer and philosopher — The Fountainhead Atlas Shrugged more Frank O'Connor. See also: The Fountainhead and The Fountainhead film. See also: Atlas Shrugged , Objectivism , and Objectivist movement. Objectivism Rational egoism Individualism Capitalism Romantic realism. Related topics. Objectivism and homosexuality Objectivism and libertarianism Objectivism's rejection of the primitive Randian hero.
Main article: Objectivism. Rand claimed Aristotle left as her primary philosophical influence, and strongly criticized Immanuel Kant right. Economic systems. Economic theories. Related topics and criticism. Anti-capitalism Capitalist state Consumerism Crisis theory Criticism of capitalism Critique of political economy Cronyism Culture of capitalism Evergreening Exploitation of labour Globalization History History of theory Market economy Periodizations of capitalism Perspectives on capitalism Post-capitalism Speculation Spontaneous order Venture philanthropy Wage slavery. See also: Objectivism and libertarianism.
Main article: Objectivist movement. Main article: Bibliography of Ayn Rand and Objectivism. Most sources transliterate her given name as either Alisa or Alissa. Rand did not participate in the production and was highly critical of the result. After Rand's post-war legal claims over the piracy were settled, her attorney purchased the negatives. The films were re-edited with Rand's approval and released as We the Living in In Mayhew , p.
In Mayhew , pp. In Mayhew a , pp. In Younkins , p. In Cocks , p. In Younkins , pp. Ayn Rand Institute. December 20, Fall Zalta, Edward N. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Retrieved May 3, Baker, James T. Ayn Rand. Twayne's United States Authors Series. Boston, Massachusetts: Twayne Publishers. ISBN Branden, Barbara The Passion of Ayn Rand. Britting, Jeff Overlook Illustrated Lives series. New York: Overlook Duckworth. Burns, Eric Burns, Jennifer November Modern Intellectual History. S2CID Burns, Jennifer New York: Oxford University Press. Day to Day. National Public Radio. Chambers, Whittaker December 28, National Review. Cocks, Nick, ed. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan. The Personalist. The Philosophic Thought of Ayn Rand paperback ed.
Chicago: University of Illinois Press. Doherty, Brian New York: Public Affairs Press. Doherty, Brian December Duffy, Francesca August 20, Education Week. Retrieved July 21, Duggan, Lisa Oakland, California: University of California Press. Elgot, Jessica April 30, The Guardian. Archived from the original on May 30, Retrieved June 14, Flaherty, Colleen October 16, Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved May 12, Grigorovskaya, Anastasiya Vasilievna December The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies. Gladstein, Mimi Reisel The New Ayn Rand Companion. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. Gladstein, Mimi Reisel SpringRand also rejected subjectivism. Long, R. Salmieri, G. The Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem came Strengths And Weaknesses an end on October On Classical Morality In Ayn Rands Anthem and Libertarianism. Brown, S.