Discovering Ayn Rand

Quick note on Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand Aida Poulsen on Atlas Shrugged

Ayn Rand Aida Poulsen on Atlas Shrugged

“You should read Ayn Rand,”—I’ve heard from Ellis Wyatts and Ken Danaggers of my life. “Why?” “You will enjoy.” Not enticing. “It’s about you.” “It cannot be.”

And an odd question: “What book do you wish you would be reading now?” “I won’t have time for such an excess for another year or so, I read some 50 articles a day… Ayn Rand’s.”

The same night a thousand pages' Atlas Shrugged loomed on my office desk. I’ve nimbly opened it, resolved to close in 5 minutes and get back to work. But Ms Rand had quite a character indeed.

I was reading that night, the next day’s lunch, dinner, after-work time, which begins after 1 am; on the plane from Los Angeles to New York, on the plane to Paris, on the TGV to Chambery, slighting magnificent views in the car to Val d’Iser, before and after skiing in Tignes, Val Thorens, Menuire, Meribel and Courchevel. I was reading in spa, during massage, while soaking in a bath tub or standing in ski boots being customized…

When the plane from New York to Los Angeles flew over the Rockies I stopped reading to involuntarily look for the Galt’s Gulch, chuckled at myself and finished the book with the plane touching the LA’s runway, returning me to the country without Ayn Rand.

Atlas Shrugged Ayn Rand Notes by Aida Poulsen

Atlas Shrugged Ayn Rand Notes by Aida Poulsen

The trove of super heroes in a mountain paradise with mystical attributes of heaven, “rationally” explained by Harry Potter-like abilities of its creator. Batmen to catch a falling paladin. Fairies to appear out of nowhere at the exact moment to wipe out Cinderella’s dolor. The cast of freckles royalty of the three anthropologically unblemished musketeers—Galt, d’Anconia and Danneskjold, despite being invariably alike in appearance, address and faculties and therefore foisting predictability, exuding sexual ferocity of an intense ascetic nobility, crowning an idealist’s idea of a divine abode...

Read: Open Letter

All these ordained as an irresistible escape for a reader from oppression of daily routine, from a struggle to ferret out intellectually challenging chums and a specific to a maximalist delving into futilities of semisolid cronies—the things Ms Rand seems to know too well.

A trouncing stew of naiveté and purity with intricacy of the author's depth converts into a bewitching grip over a reader's imagination. From the middle of the book it occurred to me that all the inordinate achievements of Atlas' characters that the author extols appear dwarfed by her own achievement of writing the daring novel.

Despite the many flaws, the luxurious vastness of Ayn Rand’s intelligence and the translucent in the read, torching purity of her character have mounted for one of the greatest pleasures I have ever had. I value the significance of this book above some of the impeccable masterpieces for its divergence and liberating might.


After I wrote the above I was told I've failed to dwell on the main issue of the book: the philosophy. But there is nothing to discuss for me- it’s so me, always been, always will be, just with less extremities.

Read: Open Letter

Read: Editor's Letter

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