On Ayn Rand / Edition 1

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This brief text assists students in understanding Ayn Rand's philosophy and thinking so that they can more fully engage in useful, intelligent class dialogue and improve their understanding of course content. Part of the "Wadsworth Philosophers Series," (which will eventually consist of approximately 100 titles, each focusing on a single "thinker" from ancient times to the present), ON AYN RAND is written by a philosopher deeply versed in the philosophy of this key thinker. Like other books in the series, this concise book offers sufficient insight into the thinking of a notable philosopher better enabling students to engage the reading and to discuss the material in class and on paper.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Gotthelf joins scholarly rigor with firsthand knowledge of Rand's thought to provide a systematic introduction to Rand's philosophy, Objectivism. The result is absorbing . . . rich with provocative ideas. . . . The book serves as an excellent introduction to Rand's thought precisely because it is intellectually serious and incorporates substantial portions of Rand's reasoning."

"Gotthelf's illuminating account of Rand's epis-temology offers an intriguing point of entry . . . as well as an object lesson on the relationship between epistemology and ethics. . . . On Ayn Rand is a remarkable success. . . . I can't think of a piece of writing that better conveys both the systematicity and the grandeur of Rand's thought than the last four pages of Gotthelf's book."

Introduces undergraduate students in philosophy to Ayn Rand's philosophical thought. Overviews her life and intellectual development, then covers her Objectivist epistemology, giving attention to both her theory of perception and to her original theory of concepts. Other subjects covered include Objectivist ethics, Rand's moral theory and politics, and her aesthetics. Asides in the main text and endnotes offer material that will assist readers in placing Rand's thought relative to the thought of more familiar philosophical figures. Gotthelf is affiliated with The College of New Jersey and has held the highest office of the Ayn Rand Society since 1990. The book is not indexed. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780534576257
  • Publisher: Cengage Learning
  • Publication date: 12/29/1999
  • Series: A Volume in the Wadsworth Philosophers Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 104
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2000

    A clearly written introduction to Objectivism and Ayn Rand

    Allan Gotthelf succeeds at condensing Ayn Rand¿s entire integrated philosophy of Objectivism into a short (97 pp.), easy to read introductory book. Most of the book is devoted to presenting the core of the philosophical system -- metaphysics, epistemology, and ethics -- but there is a glance at politics and esthetics, and two chapters are devoted to a biography of Ayn Rand. Gotthelf argues that philosophy is not an esoteric game, but a practical tool none of us can do without. He shows how one¿s ability to make decisions and one¿s ethical and political views stem from the metaphysical and epistemological premises one accepts. Ultimately philosophy moves the world. *On Ayn Rand* argues that Objectivism is practical: a guide to living one¿s life, which, when correctly understood and acted upon, will enable its practitioner to achieve happiness. *On Ayn Rand* introduces all the main ideas of Objectivism in a clear manner, easy for the beginner to grasp. For example, Gotthelf explains that three metaphysical axioms, which are perceptually self-evident, underlie all our thinking and are properly the starting point of philosophy: that something exists, that the act of grasping this implies that one is conscious, and that everything that exists has an identity. Using simple examples he shows how even if one tries to deny these axioms one affirms them. *On Ayn Rand* is not written in a detached manner, so common to textbooks. Its author had been a student of Ayn Rand and knows his subject. His presentation is both factual and passionate. Convinced of the practicality of ideas and of their power to change the world, Allan Gotthelf has written a clear and enjoyable introduction to a revolutionary philosophy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2000

    An excellent introduction to Objectivism

    Students who want to learn more about Objectivism will find no better introduction to the philosophy of Ayn Rand than Allan Gotthelf¿s new book. In On Ayn Rand, Gotthelf deftly takes his readers from the first principles of Rand¿s metaphysics to her view of man as a heroic being, showing how each step builds on the one before. What¿s more, unlike many modern philosophy texts, this one is clear, concise and easy to digest. Even advanced scholars will find much of value in this book. They will undoubtedly find it to be a well-organized summary of Objectivism¿s essential points and the book¿s footnotes may serve as starting points for further research. Highly recommended.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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