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Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   Ayn Rand has been one of the most widely discussed figures in writing, both because of her skill as a writer and her contemporary intellectual ideas. In Atlas Shrugged, she not only paints a fantastic story but allows her theory of the virtues of selfishness to show through.

The idea of reading an entire fictional story about railroads and philosophy isn't all that appealing. Yet Ayn Rand is able to create a fascinating and moving story using these two topics.

Dagny Taggart and Hank Rearden live in a world that they don't understand. As they use their resources and skills to achieve the ultimate human desire C money C they are scorned. The more successful they are, the more they find themselves under attack. As the world literally begins to fall apart under the control of a socialist "govemment," Dagny and Rearden fight to keep the one thing they live for C their skills.

Atlas Shrugged sums up the philosophy of Ayn Rand. This philosophy, Objectivism, is a relatively simple one. Its main principles are that man must live by his own mind, for himself, and that reason is the basic means of survival.

The beauty of this novel goes beyond its philosophy. People who don't agree with the ideas presented in Objectivism will still be sucked into the story and will find it hard to put down. Ayn Rand is such a phenomenal writer that this one-thousand plus page book is easily read in one sitting. There are several twists in the plot that take the reader completely by surprise and keep the story especially interesting.

Also visible in the story is the idea of "feminism." In Rand's lifetime, this controversial topic was just beginning to be discussed, yet it is clearly evident in Dagny's key position on the railroad. This is just another tie that keeps this book so timeless.

But the primary reason that Rand's writing is so great is because she was writing for herself. In following her philosophy, she created the perfect novel.

Atlas Shrugged is Rand's best work, both in my opinion and hers. While it was a timely novel then, it still relates to politics, philosophy, and life. Its popularity has made Rand plenty of money, but the action of writing the novel was the key part in Rand's life. She created a work of art, which came from deep inside her soul; it was what she wanted




This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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