Synopses & Reviews
Written with all the power and conviction that made The Fountainhead a classic of American letters, Ayn Rand's Anthem is a hymn to man's independent spirit and to the highest word in the human language - "Ego." First written in 1937, Anthem was published in England, but was refused in publication in America, for reason which the reader might discover by reading it for himself. In 1946, it appeared as a pamphlet, issued by Pamphleteers, Inc., of Los Angeles. This is its first American publication in regular book form. Anthem tells the story of a man who rediscovers the individualism and his own "I" - in a world of absolute collectivization, a world where sightless, joyless, selfless men exist for the sake of serving the State; where their work, their food and their mating are prescribed to them by order of the Collective's rulers in the name of society's welfare - a world which has lost all the achievements of science and civilization, when it lost their root, the independent mind, and has reverted to primitive savagery - a world where language contains no singular pronouns, where the "We" has replaced the "I," and where men are put to death for the crime of discovering and speaking the "unspeakable word." The story tells of one man who rebelled, of his struggle and his victory. Assigned to the life work of street sweeper by the rulers who resented his brilliant, questioning, unsubmissive mind - he becomes a scientist, secretly, risking his life for the sake of his quest for knowledge. In the midst of collective stagnation, where men toil at manual labor by the light of candles - he discovers electricity. In the midst of eugenic planning and State-controlled Palaces of Mating - he discovers a personal love and a woman of his own choice. In the midst of brutal morality which proclaims that man is only a sacrificial animal to the needs of others - he discovers that man's greatest moral duty is the pursuit of his own happiness. He endures danger, denunciation, imprisonment, torture - but he breaks the chains of the Collective, he escapes with the woman he loves, to start a new life in an uncharted wilderness, and he reaches the day when he is able to predict that "my home will become the capital of a world where each man will be free to exist for his own sake." Anthem presents not merely a frightening projection of existing trends, but, more importantly, a positive answer to those trends and a weapon against them, a key to the world's moral crisis and to a new morality of individualism - a morality which, if accepted today, will save us from a future such as the one presented in this story.
In a future where there is no love, no science, and everyone is equal and of one entity, one man defies the group to be his own person. That is a serious offense.
He lived in the dark ages of the future. In a loveless world, he dared to fall in love. In an age that had lost all trace of science and civilization, he had the courage to seek and find knowledge. But these were not the crimes for which he would be hunted. He was marked for death because he had committed the unpardonable sin: standing out from the mindless human herd. Ayn Rands classic tale of a dystopian future of the great We”a world that deprives individuals of a name or independenceanticipates her later masterpieces, The Fountainhead
and Atlas Shrugged
This seventy-fifth anniversary edition of Anthem, celebrating the controversial and enduring legacy of its author, features an introduction by Rands literary executor, Leonard Piekoff, which includes excerpts from documents by Ayn Randletters, interviews, and journal notes in which she discusses Anthem. This volume also includes a complete reproduction of the original British edition with Ayn Rands handwritten editorial changes and a Readers Guide to her writings and philosophy.
In Ayn Rands novels you have found more than great works of artyou have found a philosophy of reason.
I had to originate a philosophical framework of my own, because my basic view of man and of existence was in conflict with most of the existing philosophical theories. In order to define, explain, and present my concept of man, I had to become a philosopher in the specific meaning of the term.”Ayn Rand
Now available for further reading on Rands philosophy: Objective Communication by Leonard Piekoff.
Ayn Rands philosophy of Objectivism is increasingly influencing the shape of the world from business to politics to achieving personal goals. In Objective Communication, Peikoff explains how you can communicate philosophical ideas with conviction, logic, and, most of all, reason.
Also available from Penguin: an enhanced edition/app of Atlas Shrugged.
here sets forth the moral principles of Objectivism, the philosophy that holds human life--the life proper to a rational being--as the standard of moral values and regards altruism as incompatible with man's nature, with the creative requirements of his survival, and with a free society.
More than 1.3 million copies sold!
The foundations of capitalism are being battered by a flood of altruism, which is the cause of the modern world's collapse. This is the view of Ayn Rand
, a view so radically opposed to prevailing attitudes that it constitutes a major philosophic revolution. In this series of essays, she presents her stand on the persecution of big business, the causes of war, the default of conservatism, and the evils of altruism. Here is a challenging new look at modern society by one of the most provocative intellectuals on the American scene.
This edition includes two articles by Ayn Rand which did not appear in the hardcover edition: The Wreckage of the Consensus," which presents the Objectivists views on Vietnam and the draft; and Requiem for Man," an answer to the Papal encyclical Progresso Populorum.
In this beautifully written and brilliantly reasoned book, Ayn Rand throws a new light on the nature of art and its purpose in human life. Once again Miss Rand eloquently demonstrates her refusal to let popular catchwords and conventional ideas stand between her and the truth as she has discovered it. The Romantic Manifesto takes its place beside The Fountainhead as one of the most important achievements of our time.
We the Living
depicts the struggle of the individual against the state, and the impact of the Russian Revolution on three human beings who demand the right to live their own lives and pursue their own happiness. This classic novel is not a story of politics, but of the men and women who fight for existence within a totalitarian state.
This is Ayn Rand's challenge to the prevalent philosophical doctrines of our time and the "atmosphere of guilt, of panic, of despair, of boredom, and of all-pervasive evasion" that they create. One of the most controversial figures on the intellectual scene, Ayn Rand was the proponent of a moral philosophy--and ethic of rational self-interest--that stands in sharp opposition to the ethics of altruism and self-sacrifice. The fundamentals of this morality--"a philosophy for living on Earth"--are here vibrantly set forth by the spokesman for a new class, For the New Intellectual.
This collection of essays was the last work planned by Ayn Rand before her death in 1982. In it, she summarizes her view of philosophy and deals with a broad spectrum of topics. According to Ayn Rand, the choice we make is not whether to have a philosophy, but which one to have: rational, conscious, and therefore practical; or contradictory, unidentified, and ultimately lethal. Written with all the clarity and eloquence that have placed Ayn Rand's Objectivist philosophy in the mainstream of American thought, these essays range over such basic issues as education, morality, censorship, and inflation to prove that philosophy is the fundamental force in all our lives.
About the Author
was born in St. Petersburg, Russia, on February 2, 1905. At age six she taught herself to read and two years later discovered her first fictional hero in a French magazine for children, thus capturing the heroic vision that sustained her throughout her life. At the age of nine she decided to make fiction writing her career. Thoroughly opposed to the mysticism and collectivism of Russian culture, she thought of herself as a European writer, especially after encountering Victor Hugo, the writer she most admired.
During her high school years, she was eyewitness to both the Kerensky Revolution, which she supported, andin 1917the Bolshevik Revolution, which she denounced from the outset. In order to escape the fighting, her family went to the Crimea, where she finished high school. The final Communist victory brought the confiscation of her father's pharmacy and periods of near-starvation. When introduced to American history in her last year of high school, she immediately took America as her model of what a nation of free people could be.
When her family returned from the Crimea, she entered the University of Petrograd to study philosophy and history. Graduating in 1924, she experienced the disintegration of free inquiry and the takeover of the university by communist thugs. Amidst the increasingly gray life, her one great pleasure was Western films and plays. Long an admirer of cinema, she entered the State Institute for Cinema Arts in 1924 to study screenwriting.
In late 1925 she obtained permission to leave Soviet Russia for a visit to relatives in the United States. Although she told Soviet authorities that her visit would be short, she was determined never to return to Russia. She arrived in New York City in February 1926. She spent the next six months with her relatives in Chicago, obtained an extension to her visa, and then left for Hollywood to pursue a career as a screenwriter.
On Ayn Rand's second day in Hollywood, Cecil B. DeMille saw her standing at the gate of his studio, offered her a ride to the set of his movie "The King of Kings," and gave her a job, first as an extra, then as a script reader. During the next week at the studio, she met an actor, Frank O'Connor, whom she married in 1929.
After struggling for several years, she sold her first screenplay, "Red Pawn," to Universal Pictures in 1932 and saw her first stage play, Night of January 16th, produced in Hollywood and then on Broadway. Her first novel, We the Living, was published in 1936. The most autobiographical of her novels, it was based on her years under Soviet tyranny. She began writing The Fountainhead in 1935. When published in 1943, it gained for its author lasting recognition as a champion of individualism.
Ayn Rand returned to Hollywood in late 1943 to write the screenplay for The Fountainhead, but wartime restrictions delayed production until 1948. Working part time as a screenwriter for Hal Wallis Productions, she began her major novel, Atlas Shrugged, in 1946. In 1951 she moved back to New York City and devoted herself full time to the completion of Atlas Shrugged.
Published in 1957, Atlas Shrugged was her greatest achievement and last work of fiction. Although she considered herself primarily a fiction writer, she realized that in order to create heroic fictional characters, she had to identify the philosophic principles which make such individuals possible.
Thereafter, Ayn Rand wrote and lectured on her philosophy: Objectivism, which she characterized as "a philosophy for living on earth." She published and edited her own periodicals from 1962 to 1976, her essays providing much of the material for six books on Objectivism and its application to the culture. Ayn Rand died on March 6, 1982, in New York City.
Every book by Ayn Rand published in her lifetime is still in print, and hundreds of thousands of copies are sold each year, so far totalling more than twenty million. Several new volumes have been published posthumously. Her vision of man and her philosophy for living on earth have changed the lives of thousands of readers and launched a philosophic movement with a growing impact on American culture.
Table of Contents
Theory and History
1. What Is Capitalism? - Ayn Rand
2. The Roots of War - Ayn Rand
3. America's Persecuted Minority: Big Business - Ayn Rand
4. Antitrust - Alan Greenspan 5. Common Fallacies About Capitalism - Nathaniel Branden
6. Gold and Economic Freedom - Alan Greenspan
7. Notes on the History of American Free Enterprise - Ayn Rand
8. The Effects of the Industrial Revolution on Women and Children - Robert Hessen
9. The Assault on Integrity - Alan Greenspan
10. The Property Status of Airwaves - Ayn Rand
11. Patents and Copyrights - Ayn Rand
12. Theory and Practice - Ayn Rand
13. Let Us Alone! - Ayn Rand
14. The Anatomy of Compromise - Ayn Rand
15. Is Atlas Shrugging? - Ayn Rand
16. The Pull Peddlers - Ayn Rand
17. "Extremism," or the Art of Smearing - Ayn Rand
18. The Obliteration of Capitalism - Ayn Rand
19. Conservatism: An Obituary - Ayn Rand
20. The New Fascism: Rule by Consensus - Ayn Rand
21. The Wreckage of the Consensus - Ayn Rand
22. The Cashing-in: The Student Rebellion - Ayn Rand
23. Alienation - Nathaniel Branden
24. Requiem for Man - Ayn Rand
Man's Rights - Ayn Rand
The Nature of Government - Ayn Rand