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This audio program addresses the themes of reason and logic as against irrationalism in its various forms, including faith, whim, and emotionalism, as they are developed in Atlas Shrugged. Why do reason and logic matter? Is a rational person without emotion or passion? Apparent contradictions drive the mystery plot of the novel. Unraveling them is the key to solving the mystery and understanding the radically objective world-view of Ayn Rand and the strikers.

The audio program covers:

  1. The principle: Reason is the source of productive achievement
    (Contradiction and non-contradiction.)
  2. Plot implementation: The mystery format of apparent contradictions
  3. Characterization: John Galt versus James Taggart, Hugh Akston vs. the irrational intellectuals
  4. Clearest statement of the theme: Galt's speech
  5. Buried riches; rational emotions

DOWNLOAD:  Accompanying PowerPoint presentation.

Note: This audio program is the second in a 6-part series, "Atlas Shrugged as a Philosophical Novel," presented at The Atlas Society's 2006 Summer Seminar. The other programs in the series are:

Part 1: Atlas Shrugged as a Philosophical Thriller
Part 2: Producers vs. Looters and Parasites
Part 4: The Pursuit of Happiness
Part 5: The Unity of Mind and Body
Part 6: Trade vs. Power 


William R Thomas

About The Author:

William R Thomas is a best-selling author. He is Lecturer in Economics at the University at Albany. He has been a lecturer at the University of Michigan, where he taught the economic history of the United States and China. He has also lectured at Gadjah Mada University in Indonesia and conducted research under the auspices of the People's University of China. Thomas is a graduate of Oberlin College, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and he holds a Master's Degree in Economics from the University of Michigan.
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