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Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

Atlas Shrugged (original 1957; edition 1999)

by Ayn Rand, Leonard Peikoff (Introduction)

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17,055296104 (3.82)475
Title:Atlas Shrugged
Authors:Ayn Rand
Other authors:Leonard Peikoff (Introduction)
Info:Plume (1999), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 1200 pages
Collections:Your library

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Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand (1957)

Recently added byandyhazno, Dumbedore_return, LitaVore, jc7727a, private library, Cubanana
  1. 144
    The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand (PghDragonMan, bigtent21, thebookpile)
    PghDragonMan: This earlier work is more lyrical and is a milder, and more condensed, version of the philosophy expressed by this work.
    bigtent21: "Atlas Shrugged" and "The Fountainhead" are becoming more relevant as we head into 2009. Large Government Buyouts and Regulation are the scourge of Atlas Shrugged and the outright sponsoring of mediocrity predominates The Fountainhead. Rand can be long-winded, but these two books are must reads regardless of your own personal beliefs.… (more)
  2. 72
    An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith (thebookpile)
  3. 73
    Essays on Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged by Robert Mayhew (mcaution)
    mcaution: Gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of Rand's magnum opus through this unique collection of scholarly criticism. See why after 50+ years in print it's selling better than when it was first published.
  4. 63
    The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin (lauranav)
  5. 74
    The Ayn Rand Cult by Jeff Walker (bertilak)
  6. 31
    The Road to Serfdom by F. A. Hayek (ljessen)
  7. 00
    Wiseguy by Nicholas Pileggi (kswolff)
    kswolff: Henry Hill, like Dagny Taggart, uses ingenuity and skill to avoid his income getting taxed by repressive moocher FBI agents and Narcs.
  8. 11
    Progress by Charles Stampul (PeerlessPress)
  9. 00
    The Probability Broach by L. Neil Smith (fulner)
    fulner: The probably broach is like Atlas Shrugged meets inter-dimensional time travel.
  10. 00
    Blood Republic: A Political Thriller by James R. Duncan (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: If you love books that try to push the envelope of philosophical thought, but do it within a rapid-fire plot, this is the book for you.
  11. 11
    The God of the Machine by Isabel Paterson (bertilak)
  12. 01
    Ten Rallies by Pasquin (PghDragonMan)
    PghDragonMan: Do the needs of the many outweigh the value of the individual?
  13. 12
    Faith of the Fallen by Terry Goodkind (Cecrow)
    Cecrow: Fans of both Ayn Rand and the fantasy genre will find affirmation in Goodkind's series, notably beginning with this entry.
  14. 23
    The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood (rratzlaff)
  15. 23
    Goddess of the Market: Ayn Rand and the American Right by Jennifer Burns (szarka)
  16. 23
    Metaphysics by Aristotle (thebookpile)
  17. 02
    Juliette by Marquis de Sade (kswolff)
    kswolff: Like "Atlas Shrugged," it is an aspirational epic about a strong-minded, pleasure-seeking woman triumphing over adversity and the herd mentality of her fellow humans. Sade, like Rand, was also a strident atheist given to writing characters give long speeches.
  18. 29
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    missmaddie: Epic struggles of good vs. evil

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» See also 475 mentions

English (291)  Spanish (1)  All (1)  Hungarian (1)  Bulgarian (1)  All (295)
Showing 1-5 of 291 (next | show all)
I bought this from a charity shop because I recognised the author's name from a list of books your should read. I then left it on my shelf as it was rather big! Dusting it off this week and getting going while travelling back home allowed me to get stuck in, despite the fact I had forgotten that every English football fan in the country would be travelling back from Easter games en masse and my concentration would be put under pressure by the singing of stadium anthems.
You could see the book as having more than one protagonist - the main character is a woman - Dagny Taggart - part of a railroading family, but there is also the railway itself, or industry or even John Galt. Despite her gender, she has the vision needed to maintain and extend the railway, but her main opponent is her less than visionary brother. It is set in America, a dystopian one where shady government intervention is dragging down ideas and advances using sinister cloak and dagger methods. Those pioneers at the top of their industrial game are bringing advances on, but Dagny and her ally Reardon are seeing their work being stifled by other's need for power. This power struggle needs talented men and women controlled so their work is controlled. Luckily there is a movement fighting back, with its figurehead a shadowy figure, a name whispered at strikes and cursed by the elite, John Galt.
Lots to think about here, with ideas of free markets and how far governments can and should control industry and ideas. I highly recommend it. ( )
  soffitta1 | Apr 20, 2017 |
I have finally finished this book, finally, and I feel like I've just finished a hundred mile marathon and have just crossed the finish line - except that instead of running into a cheering crowd and the sounds of cheers and congratulations, I've fallen face down into a giant puddle of mud while a crowd of businessmen stand over me and chide me for being so god damn altruistic.

Who is John Galt? Answer: a total ass. And, regrettably, hot.

(Warning: Review contains much worse curse words after this point. Just letting you know.)

This was the worst fucking book I have ever read. And yes, I did read Twilight. A thousand pages about selfish rich people who believe they are so goddamn gifted that the 'robbers' of the world don't deserve their talents? Sorry, too busy gagging to care. Waah, think about the poor widdle billionaires! Let's not even discuss their precious Atlantis. Doesn't help that this book is plain boring. What little action there is is swaddled in ten feet of philosophical nonsense and men in suits standing around waxing lyrical about their feeeeeeelings about business. Also, beyond the main core of characters, I can't really say that Rand develops the secondary cast beyond the pale stereotypes expected of them so she can advance her story.

Also, she fucking kills off an entire train full of people - just before describing each passenger as selfish bastards so they must have deserved their horrific fiery fate. Oh.

The only reason this book even gets one star is Dagny goddamn Taggart, HBIC of trains. And the fact that she isn't afraid to bone every good looking dude in this book. I totally ship Dagny/John/Francisco/Hank . . . and Dagny/trains. You mad, fandom? Didn't think so. Honestly, I'm looking forward to the Atlas Shrugged fanfiction; it certainly can't be any worse than the source material.

PS: Dearest Katie, when you read this review, I want you to know YOU OWE ME ONE. ( )
  SarahHayes | Feb 20, 2017 |
Perhaps the most significant book in post-war American literature, one which has regained popularity since the start of the economic crisis, Altas Shrugged is the embodiment of an ideal society, the ultimate vehicle for Ayn Rand's philosophy of objectivism. Weighing in at over 1,000 pages of tightly-packed print, it's also one of the longest novels in English literature. Is it any good?

Well, as a novel, Atlas Shrugged unfortunately falls flat, in ways that Rand's first novel, We the Living, didn't. There is foremost no humanity in the novel, the characters are dismembered, dessicated mouthpieces to Rand's philosophical diatribes, with everyone fitting neatly into 'good' and 'bad' camps. Rand herself claimed that using characters as symbols was never her intention: "My characters are persons in whom certain human attributes are focused more sharply and consistently than in average human beings." But what we are left with are flimsy apparitions, lobotomised automatons fulfilling the roles required of them to extol the virtues of her philosophy. Even this is taken to extremes, with one of the proponents delivering a 60-page long theoretical speech around which the rest of the novel might well be seen as scaffolding.

To complement this set of lifeless characters is a plot which similarly confounds understanding. In an America which technologically resembles the period in which Rand was writing, yet industrially feels set in an earlier period, and borrows heavily from the Great Depression, the main events and the decisions of the characters jar heavily with what the reader knows and expects from society. As another reviewer pointed out, what's missing is the overt understanding that the story takes place in a parallel world or a different timeframe, to create a genuine sense of credibility. True, there are some hints that push this novel into the realms of science fiction – a super metal alloy, power derived from static electricity, weapons based on sound waves etc. – but the world is definitely our own, even if the people and their decisions are alien. Key to the story is the gradual collapse of the economic system, and the disappearance of the champions of industry. What happens in Rand's universe when the creative minds of the world go on strike? Apparently, they settle down on the frontier and, working one month a year, create a fully-fledged miniature utopia. Personally, I imagine they'd starve.

A bad book can still be a good delivery vehicle for an interesting message. Yet this unwieldy book fails even to achieve the latter. For its mammoth length, Rand's message could have been relatively concise, but for the plot's repetitiveness. If you are interested in Rand's philosophy, there are plenty of other places to turn which will provide a far more succinct and detailed explanation, without the repetition or padding necessary for its delivery in novel form. Whether you find place for Rand's philosophy in your own, or like Gore Vidal consider it "nearly perfect in its immorality", there are simply better summaries available. For the converted, this is probably a wonderful book, but for anyone else it simply isn't worth risking the investment of time and energy.

No one can deny this book's enduring popularity. That alone gives rise to curiosity strong enough to keep it fresh in the public consciousness. But it is a far cry from a great piece of literature, and as an allegory, a philosophical harbinger, its ponderous and verbose nature should have the curious turn elsewhere. The novel opens with the question: "Who is John Galt?" A thousand pages of largely disappointing text will reveal the answer, but you'd be better served just reading the appendix. ( )
  Fips | Oct 30, 2016 |
I'm so thrilled that I finally read this! I have sort of a love-hate relationship with this book. There were momentns when I thought I was crazy for reading it and other times when I loved it. It's very heavy reading. She could have chopped 400 pages off and it would have been a better novel, but I think the narcissist in her just wouldn't shut up. Perfect title and I loved discovering the meaning behind it. ( )
  JennysBookBag.com | Sep 28, 2016 |
totally disagree with the philosophy of the book, but enjoyed reading it as a teenager. ( )
  ericmcherry | Sep 14, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 291 (next | show all)
"Despite laborious monologues, the reader will stay with this strange world, borne along by its story and eloquent flow of ideas."
added by GYKM | editNewsweek
"to warn contemporary America against abandoning its factories, neglecting technological progress and abolishing the profit motive seems a little like admonishing water against running uphill."
"inspired" and "monumental" but "(t)o the Christian, everyone is redeemable. But Ayn Rand’s ethical hardness may repel those who most need her message: that charity should be voluntary…. She should not have tried to rewrite the Sermon on the Mount."
Atlas Shrugged represents a watershed in the history of world literature.
"remarkably silly" and "can be called a novel only by devaluing the term" ... "From almost any page of Atlas Shrugged, a voice can be heard, from painful necessity, commanding: 'To the gas chambers — go!'"

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Rand, Aynprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brick, ScottNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Frank O'Connor and Nathaniel Branden
To Frank O'Connor
First words
"Who is John Galt?"
I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.
Pride is the recognition of the fact that you are your own highest value and, like all of man’s values, it has to be earned.
Rationality is the recognition of the fact that nothing can alter the truth and nothing can take precedence over that act of perceiving it.
Until and unless you discover that money is the root of all good, you ask for your own destruction. When money ceases to become the means by which men deal with one another, then men become the tools of other men. Blood, whips and guns—or dollars. Take your choice—there is no other.
It wasn’t real, was it?
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0452011876, Paperback)

At last, Ayn Rand's masterpiece is available to her millions of loyal readers in trade paperback.

With this acclaimed work and its immortal query, "Who is John Galt?", Ayn Rand found the perfect artistic form to express her vision of existence. Atlas Shrugged made Rand not only one of the most popular novelists of the century, but one of its most influential thinkers.

Atlas Shrugged is the astounding story of a man who said that he would stop the motor of the world--and did. Tremendous in scope, breathtaking in its suspense, Atlas Shrugged stretches the boundaries further than any book you have ever read. It is a mystery, not about the murder of a man's body, but about the murder--and rebirth--of man's spirit.

Atlas Shrugged is the "second most influential book for Americans today" after the Bible, according to a joint survey conducted by the Library of Congress and the Book of the Month Club

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:10 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

The decisions of a few industrial leaders shake the roots of capitalism and reawaken man's awareness of himself as an heroic being.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 15 descriptions

Legacy Library: Ayn Rand

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