With this review of ‘Anthem’ By Ayn Rand I want to recognize myself for accomplishing the goal I set for myself. I had long heard of the story ‘Atlas Shrugged’ I heard that it was a massive book and I heard all kinds of stories about what it’s pages actually held. I was working at a bookstore when I actually saw ‘Atlas Shrugged’ for the first time. I was in awe of the book and solemnly swore that people who are intelligent are able to read that much and remember that much material. Finally it was my curiosity and access to an e-book that lead me to read ‘Atlas Shrugged’ for myself. I was not content with being told what was in the book; I wanted to find out myself.
After I read Atlas Shrugged and entered the contest for which I gained ‘The fountainhead’ as reward I decided to expand my understanding of Rand and her philosophy. I read ‘The fountainhead’ and I have just finished ‘Anthem’ what I present is what I think is a highly educated opinion on Anthem and the the novels of Ayn Rand
I read the story before the introduction and as a book Anthem is short in comparison with her later works. I am not surprised to see that the theme from her later works carried through. ‘Anthem’ only revolves around two figures but those two figures are mimic later in Rand’s work. At the core Rand held an ideal about a perfect male. Equality 7-2521 is the embodiment of all future heroic male figures in Rand’s work. The male figure is inner-looking and focused on a love for learning. There is a sort of unspoken perfection to be reached with Rand’s characters, that perfection eventually turns out to be John Galt.
Liberty 5-53000 was the shell of every Heroic female character to be written by Rand. Even Rand’s most stubborn female characters, Ms. Taggart and Ms. Francon, still followed in the path of a female with doe eyed puppy love loyalty to the heroic men.
There are two things that drive an Ayn Rand work and those are love and the end of the world. In ‘Fountainhead’ it was the end of an Era, the end of a great time of wealth in America, it was reborn with Roark. In ‘Atlas Shrugged’ it is the strike that causes the end of the world as known by people, and is restarted by John Galt. In Anthem the world has already ended and it is up to Equality 7-2521 to rebuild the world and awaken others to a sense of Ego. Each of these men having side kick females who have an unquestioning loyalty to their men and stand by the man’s side as he creates a new world.
I learned a lot about writing from the story and may read it again for artistic notes on simplicity. I always feel there is a ring of truth in the stories of Ayn Rand, but her reply to a potential threat of global collectivism is as extreme as the nightmare she portrays. “Anthem” is no different. The world that Rand creates seems to be reminiscent of what Plato considered just in Plato’s republic, and yet the Heroic male is discontent. Through discontent and love the heroic male escapes control and educate himself on how to create a new world. If one reads ‘Anthem’ one has read ‘Atlas Shrugged’ in my opinion. The latter is filled with flare and the former is dry to the bone.
After accomplishing my goal I can officially retire my education on Ayn Rand and objectivism. I will revisit ‘Atlas Shrugged’ but only for the essay contest. I have been inspired by Rand’s work and I have learned a lot from her. I greatly disagree with objectivism and with the opinions of Ayn Rand but I do feel richer for having added her perspective and her writings to my thoughts
If I get to be an old man I’m going to tell my kids that the fondest memories I have are riding the Staten Island Ferry at night into Manhattan for some fun in Harlem.
My saddest is riding the ferry during the mid day back into Staten.
Playing “Misty Morning” as I ride into Manhattan during the pre dawn hours is also pretty high on the list too.
Right about now the Staten Island Ferry is looking like heaven.
If I could commute into Manhattan everyday for work using the Ferry my head would be so big the boat would sink.
Every time I was on the ferry I felt like the richest person in the world with Manhattan before me, the entire world..the entire world..my God I love New York City
but for real, that commute is gonna be a beast, the ferry is slow AF and takes forever to leave. lol