Ayn Rand

Kathleen Conn (Independent Scholar - Europe)
Download PDF Add to Bookshelf Report an Error

The American novelist Ayn Rand wrote the most intellectually challenging fiction of her generation. She also defined a comprehensive philosophy, including a theory of esthetics in which she explained her literary values, techniques and objectives. In a 1963 speech she is explicit: “The motive and purpose of my writing is

the projection of an ideal man

. The portrayal of a moral ideal, as my ultimate literary goal, as an end in itself – to which any didactic, intellectual or philosophical values contained in a novel are only the means.” Her vision of the ideal man was a theme uniting her early life, her literary career and her later philosophical work.

Ayn Rand was born Alissa Rosenbaum in St. Petersburg, Russia, Feb 2, 1905. Her earliest inspiration was in heroic French children's

2373 words

Citation: Conn, Kathleen. "Ayn Rand". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 20 October 2001 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=3705, accessed 17 April 2024.]

3705 Ayn Rand 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

Save this article

If you need to create a new bookshelf to save this article in, please make sure that you are logged in, then go to your 'Account' here

Leave Feedback

The Literary Encyclopedia is a living community of scholars. We welcome comments which will help us improve.