For the New Intellectual: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand (50th Anniversary Edition)

For the New Intellectual: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand (50th Anniversary Edition)

by Ayn Rand

Paperback(Mass Market Paperback - Reissue)

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Here is Ayn Rand’s first non-fiction work—a challenge to the prevalent philosophical doctrines of our time and the “atmosphere of guilt, of panic, of despair, of boredom, and of all-pervasive evasion” that they create.

As incisive and relevant today as it was sixty years ago, this book presents the essentials of Ayn Rand’s philosophy “for those who wish to acquire an integrated view of existence.” In the title essay, she offers an analysis of Western culture, discusses the causes of its progress, its decline, its present bankruptcy, and points the road to an intellectual renaissance.

One of the most controversial figures on the intellectual scene, Ayn Rand was the proponent of a moral philosophy—and ethic of rational self-interest—that stands in sharp opposition to the ethics of altruism and self-sacrifice. The fundamentals of this morality—"a philosophy for living on Earth"—are here vibrantly set forth by the spokesman for a new class, For the New Intellectual.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780451163080
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/01/2011
Edition description: Reissue
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 145,572
Product dimensions: 4.13(w) x 6.75(h) x 0.61(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Born February 2, 1905, Ayn Rand published her first novel, We the Living, in 1936. Anthem followed in 1938. It was with the publication of The Fountainhead (1943) and Atlas Shrugged (1957) that she achieved her spectacular success. Rand’s unique philosophy, Objectivism, has gained a worldwide audience. The fundamentals of her philosophy are put forth in three nonfiction books, Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology, The Virtues of Selfishness, and Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal. They are all available in Signet editions, as is the magnificent statement of her artistic credo, The Romantic Manifesto.

Date of Birth:

February 2, 1905

Date of Death:

March 6, 1982

Place of Birth:

St. Petersburg, Russia

Place of Death:

New York, New York


Graduated with highest honors in history from the University of Petrograd, 1924

Table of Contents

For the New Intellectual - Ayn Rand Preface
For the New Intellectual
We the Living
The Fountainhead
The Nature of the Second-Hander
The Soul of a Collectivist
The Soul of an Individualist
Atlas Shrugged
The Meaning of Money
The Martyrdom of the Industrialists
The Moral Meaning of Capitalism
The Meaning of Sex
"From Each According to His Ability, to Each According to His Need"
The Forgotten Man of Socialized Medicine
The Nature of an Artist
"This Is John Galt Speaking"

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For the New Intellectual: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
kyleb More than 1 year ago
This book is a wonderful spring board into objectivism. Ayn Rand runs through the founding principles of her philosophy in the first half of the book. In the second half she takes key excerpts from her novels that illustrate those principles. You will not be disappointed!
Guest More than 1 year ago
FOR THE NEW INTELLECTUAL When many years ago I decided that Rand's work was an area that I needed to investigate, I found myself at a floor-to-ceiling rack of her volumes in a bookstore. Intimidating. Even today there are few first-rate introductions to her vast output then, there was only, either in that rack or otherwise known to me: the 'For The New Intellectual' volume. It's a snapshot of her philosophical viewpoint, but as presented in the novels, not in her nonfiction essay collections. One may question the strategy there, since the philosophy (outside the context of story characters) is approached differently in the nonfiction (and thus some readers could suffer confusion), but for a one-volume taste of the total viewpoint, I found it just the thing needed. It didn't bring me to a total understanding of Objectivism, but it gave me enough basics to know what sections to pursue next, and as well helped to clarify that which Objectivism was not. A closer observation of the book's structure reveals that it's actually not one but two things. First, as the back-cover blurb indicates, it has the philosophical passages from the well-known novels. But there's also the longer and opening title piece, new at the time and not included in different essay collections since. That 50-page essay (as opposed to the novel excerpts which sketch answers to various philosophical problems) brings to light her conception of the problems that required the answers. In about 20 pages she pretty much covers the intellectual history of the Western world, along the way describing how later thinkers either followed or deviated from previous ones. Proceeding toward the middle ages, the essay is the prose equivalent of an intellectual disaster movie (as humanity turns away from civilization) and then becomes more upbeat (as the Renaissance sees a reduction in ignorace and suffering). It concludes with a view of the contemporary situation, setting the stage for the recommendations in the novel excerpts that follow. Any number of later books claim to offer convenient introductions to Rand's core work. This is the one I myself used at the start of my research on her, and found that it worked well both as backstory (the title essay) and as sales pitch or inducement (the excerpts). As with any large system, there's no shortcut to apprehending Objectivism, but this book contains the initial small steps by which readers could later hit their stride.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The first half of For the New Intellectual is a detailed non-fiction essay explaining past and current ideologies in terms of 'mystics of muscle', aka 'Attilas', and 'mystics of the mind', aka 'witch doctors'. These basically translate into those who want to control what people *do* such as dictators, and those who want to control what people *believe* such as religious leaders. The essay goes into detail explaining their dependency on both each other and their victims. Perhaps most importantly it explains how not to be a victim.

The second half of the book illustrates many of the principles described in the first half through excerpts from Ayn Rand's fictional works We The Living, Anthem, The Fountainhead, and Atlas Shrugged. WARNING: There are plot spoilers in the excerpts.
jpsnow on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The first 25 pages of this completely enthralled me. Rand's no-nonsense style deftly conveys a philosophy that seems both wise and clever. Her summarization of modern history places the center of an hourglass around the founding of America by the first "thinkers who were men of action." Current intellectuals have failed to keep pace with the advancements made by the producers in our modern world of the past 250 years. Humans are distinct from other animals because of our ability to conceptualize and we have a need to do so in order to survive in our world. The short history of the man includes an Attila class and a Witch Doctor class who eventually became obsolete with the advent of the business producer and the intellectual. As man learned to understand nature and science he also learned to use it, leading to rapid economic advancement. The Attila conquered without understanding the "somehow" of production. The Witch Doctor controls the Attila through the fear implied by alleged supernatural knowledge. "The first society in history whose leaders were neither Attials nor Witch Doctors, a society led, dominated, and created by the Producers, was the United States of America. The moral code implicit in its political principles was not the Witch Doctor's code of self-sacrifice. The political principles embodied in the Constitution were not Attila's blank check on brute force, but men's protection against any future Attila's ambition. The Founding Fathers were neither passive, death-worshipping mystics nor mindless, power-seeking looters; as a political group, they were a phenomenon unprecedented in history; they were thinkers who were also men of action. They had rejected the soul-body dichotomy, with its two corollaries; the impotence of man's mind and the damnation of this earth; thye had rejected the doctrine of suffering as man's metaphysical fate, tey proclaimed man's right to the pursuit of happiness and were determined to establish on earth the conditions required for man's proper existence, by the 'unaided' pwer of their intellect. A society based on and geared to the conceptual level of man's consciousness, a society dominated by a philosophy of reason, has no places for the rule of fear and guilt. Reason requires freedom, self-confidence, and self-esteem. It requires the right to think and to act on the guidance of one's thinking -- the right to live by one's own independent judgement. Intellectual freedom cannot exist without political freedom; political freedom cannot exist without economic freedom; a fee mind and a free market are corollaries." My only reservation involved Rand's apparent view on religion.
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Subjectivist More than 1 year ago
Objectivism is an interesting philosophy and Ayn Rand is an equally compelling character, but the very publication of this book almost serves to illustrate the greatest (or at least most ironical) vice of objectivist rationality. More than half of this book is composed of passages from Rand's other works, formatted in a one-after-the-other line-up that offers NO fresh, updated spin on the presented ideas and instead opts for an elongated preface that restates a good deal of her cherished dogmas. The back cover fails to mention this and it is nowhere apparent that the MAJORITY of this book is word for word copied from her fiction novels. It's like Signet is just trying to squeeze a few extra bucks out of the Randian lemon. It is as bitter as it is obtuse. The first fifty pages are interesting enough but do not warrant an eight dollar purchase. See Atlas Shrugged for her most worthy novel, or look online/dedicate an hour or two to the bookstore if you want to experience her essays. This book is a mostly just a waste of a tenner and a waste of time.