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Anthem by Ayn Rand
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Anthem (edition 1996)

by Ayn Rand, Leonard Peikoff (Introduction), Leonard Peikoff (Contributor)

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7,063139511 (3.63)162
Member:ChristinaDye
Title:Anthem
Authors:Ayn Rand
Other authors:Leonard Peikoff (Introduction), Leonard Peikoff (Contributor)
Info:Signet (1996), Edition: Expanded 50th Anniversary, Mass Market Paperback, 272 pages
Collections:Your library, Favorites
Rating:****
Tags:None

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Anthem by Ayn Rand

Recently added bysand_louise, wpisfs, Icarpenter, Wereon, private library, cls1000, KamGeb, akunzeman, AdaWinder, JACipriano
  1. 113
    Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell (MMSequeira)
    MMSequeira: Both 1984 and Anthem we're inspired by Zamyatin's We. Both are worth reading, as cautionary tales.
  2. 40
    Essays on Ayn Rand's Anthem by Robert Mayhew (mcaution)
    mcaution: Gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of Rand's novella through this unique collection of scholarly criticism.
  3. 63
    We by Yevgeny Zamyatin (myshelves)
    myshelves: Classic dystopian novel.
  4. 44
    The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (coolsnak3)
    coolsnak3: more dystopia for you. :)
  5. 11
    Uglies by Scott Westerfeld (TaylorReynolds)
  6. 12
    The Giver by Lois Lowry (kxlly)
  7. 34
    Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (Unionhawk)
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Showing 1-5 of 138 (next | show all)
I think. I am. I will.

This book is about rediscovering individualism. It's about a future possibly where people are deprived of names, independence, and values. It is a very short but good read. ( )
  jesssika | Sep 9, 2014 |
This is on of Ayn Rand's shorter works that encapsulates her ideas about objectivism. I read both The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged in high school and found them troublingly off-putting. Anthem was no different in that respect. While I sympathize with Rand's emphasis on the importance of individuality, I have trouble with the idea that differences between human beings can and should be used as justification for unequal treatment. Condemning people to street sweeping because they are "less good" in some way than other human beings is no better than condemning people to street sweeping because they do not fit with the dominant culture's idea of "good" people, which is one of the great evils put forth by this novella. I don't think that individual differentiation should be erased by any means, but neither do I think that constructing a social system based on some perception of inherent goodness is an act of justice. Inherent goodness is a relative concept that changes with context and according to the views of the dominant majority. I think there is a middle road to be had here, one that respects individuality and skills without using that respect as an excuse for allowing the suffering of groups deemed less valuable in some way.

I understand Rand's background coming out of the communist Soviet Union, but I don't think that socialism is the social ill that she paints it as in her works. Socialized medicine seems a very good idea to me, for instance. There is no reason that anyone in this country should not be getting the medical care that they need. ( )
  raselyem7 | Aug 30, 2014 |
First: Some questions that went through my head while reading this.
1. If we lived in a collective society, how would we experience or ignore certain events that come to pass that would feel abnormal or alien to us?
2. Would the mind automatically wonder of things forbidden? or would this happen to only a few? (like the main character and what he thinks is his curse).
3. Is this society possible? could it ever exist? Are we already living in a society where this is happening (in certain ways)?

To be someone without an identity, a mindless herd. I put myself in the shoes of the main character and threw myself into this word as best I could... and I found it to be terrifying to think of. Thinking of it, I realize that out society has many similarities to the world and characters within the story. Going day to day, doing the same thing, without original thought or identity is something that happens all the time. But the question is... how much does original thought and identity really matter? If looked at on a whole, our existence matter very little once our time has ended. We believe it's important to have our own voice and ideas but in the end it plays a part only DURING our existence in the here and now. If you put religion or spiritual beliefs into the equation then the view will change but without those things there is hardly a reason for doing anything or experiencing anything.

I do not like feeling this way about life and tend to avoid if fairly successfully. This book brought those questions and thoughts through my mind again. It is just another way of looking at our existence and trying to make meaning of it. This is not to say it is the truth behind our humanity and the meaning of life.... nothing. It should be tread lightly lest you take it's subject matter too closely to your heart and mind.

The books world is a nightmare. It is the type of society that I have nightmares about. Having no free will, no identity. Where is the reason for life? Everything is a machine, no reason for anything. It touches on many topics that I fear from my own thoughts. It was hard to read only because it brought those fears around again. On the other hand, I put myself into the world and felt the excitement of discovery, of seeing familiar things in a new light. Of appreciating what we have in the world around us and not wanting more then what is usual. All these things I have been reminded of through this book. I highly recommend it but caution those who will take those subjects and brood on them... I know it can be done and it's not easy to handle. Stay away, if you are one of those few. ( )
1 vote yougotamber | Aug 22, 2014 |
Starts strong but loses its cohesion somewhere around the point where the protagonist discovers electricity - by chance. ( )
  Audacity88 | Aug 13, 2014 |
I REALLY like this book. I like the way it's written, & the message, cos I think that even though it's Rand's 'philosophy', she doesn't present it in the same manner as her other books. It's presented in a pretty neat way. Maybe she should have done that with everything else, maybe more people would like her. I would have given it five stars, but there were some parts at the end that didn't really make sense in the storyline, I think he evolved too quickly. I'm sure she wrote it that way in order to not make it too long, but still. Also, we are never told which books they find in the house, I would have liked to know that. But other than that, I really loved the book. ( )
  mvbdlr | Aug 2, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ayn Randprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Peikoff, LeonardIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
It is a sin to write this. It is a sin to think words no others think and to put them down upon a paper no others are to see. It is base and evil. It is as if we were speaking alone to no ears but our own. And we know well that there is no transgression blacker than to do or think alone. We have broken the laws. The laws say that men may not write unless the Council of Vocations bid them so. May we be forgiven!
Quotations
This, my body and spirit, this is the end of the quest.
Rather would we be damned with you than blessed with all our brothers.
The fortunes of my spirit are not to be made into coins of brass and be flung into the wind as alms for the poor of spirit.
I understood that centuries of chains and lashes will not kill the spirit of man nor the sense of truth within him.
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Equality 7-2521 lives in the Dark Ages of the future, where all decisions are made by committee, all people live in collectives, all traces of individualism have been wiped out. But the spark of individual thought and freedom still burns in Equality 7-2521, a passion which he has been taught to call sinful. In a purely egalitarian world, he dares to stand forth from the herd -- to think and choose for himself, to discover electricity, and to love the woman of his choice. Now he has been marked for death for committing the ultimate sin: in a world where the great "we" reign supreme, he has rediscovered the lost and holy word "I". This provocative book is an anthem sung in praise of man's ego.… (more)

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Penguin Australia

Two editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0451191137, 0141189614

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