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Ayn Rand Answers: The Best of Her Q & A Paperback – 1 Nov 2005

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 241 pages
  • Publisher: New American Library (Nov. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451216652
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451216656
  • Product Dimensions: 13.7 x 1.5 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 707,309 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

AYN RAND is the author of "Anthem, The Fountainhead, " and "Atlas Shrugged", and numerous non-fiction essays on philosophy, ethics, politics, art, and literature. Her philosophy, Objectivism, has gained a worldwide audience of adherents and admirers. She died in March 1982.

Robert Mayhew is Professor of Philosophy, Seton Hall University.


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Format: Paperback
Here's a quick intro to Ayn Rand's thought. It's not a big book but it's pretty wide-ranging. She talks about specific people and issues but it seems her favorite topics are philosophical. Those, she explains her chain of reasoning as best she can within the brevity required of the Q&A situation -- so she manages more than a superficial answer. Finally, of course, you get a taste of her difficult personality. That's part of Ayn Rand, too.
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Format: Paperback
I have noticed some criticisms of this book.

I suspect ‘Theodore Keer’ is not really an Ayn Rand fan (despite saying that she “needs no defense”), for he hints at the perennial themes of Rand’s most dishonest critics. 1. “Ayn Rand died on March 6, 1982, of heart failure” (‘Ayn Rand Lexicon’). That is to say, contra the trolls, that we don’t know whether it was smoking or not. She was 77 years old, after all. 2. No one was “purged” from the Objectivist movement. How can someone be “purged” from a movement, as opposed to an organization or a party or company? Besides, no one has a right to be someone’s friend. And, besides, “purge” victims don’t typically profit from the ‘purger’ as have the embittered Nathaniel Branden and Murray Rothbard (who have done so much to push the ‘Ayn Rand cult’ angle). What they have to be embittered about, I don’t know. They probably wouldn’t even be famous enough to warrant Wikipedia pages, if they had not had Rand to launch their careers.

Now onto the book itself… Keer complains that the editor Robert Mayhew deleted the word “anarchism”. This is false, as Keer himself points out in quoting the book: “Libertarian anarchism is pure whim worship”! Keer complains that Mayhew deleted “it is proper and good that mankind at large, or as a large a section as a nation--should have different views. It's good to have different views, provided you respect each other's rights” (this is what Keer quotes as being the transcript of the original speech in question, which I shall assume here is accurate). This is misleading. The book: “And it's good that people within a nation should have different views, provided we respect each other's rights.” Can anyone point out any material change in meaning? Didn’t think so.
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