Who is The Atlas Society?

Our moonshot: Engage a billion young minds with the ideas of Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand’s fiction has been the most effective “gateway drug” to liberty, which is why CATO Institute founder Ed Crane deemed Rand the “all time greatest recruiter for the liberty movement.”

THE CHALLENGE: How to preserve and grow that recruiting role when daily reading of books among young people has fallen from 70% in the late 1970’s to 12% today?

The Atlas Society is meeting this challenge: pioneering artistic, technologically savvy ways of marketing Rand’s ideas to new audiences through a variety of vehicles. This includes animated videos, graphic novels, social media, and both virtual and live events.

Ayn Rand's philosophical works have been praised as presenting historic breakthroughs in thinking. At the Atlas Society, our scholars work to further develop this philosophy born in the mid-twentieth century. We present the empowering principles of Objectivism to a global audience, and offer those principles as a rational and moral alternative in the marketplace of philosophical ideas.

Our content and our world-class faculty of scholars promote the principles of Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism,  set forth in such works as her epic novel Atlas Shrugged, and in her brilliant non-fiction essays. Objectivism is designed as a guide to life, and celebrates the remarkable potential and power of the individual. Objectivism also challenges the doctrines of irrationalism, self-sacrifice, brute force, and collectivism that have brought centuries of chaos and misery into the lives of millions of individuals.

We do this through a variety of programs, which include:

  • Developing our digital channels which garner more than 1 million views annually.
  • Introducing tens of thousands of engaged young adults to Objectivism annually through this website and our social media channels.
  • Original scholarly research which further develops the philosophy.
  • Academic training of young intellectuals.
  • Publishing and commissioning influential books and monographs.
  • Original commentary and op-eds published in mainstream media.
  • Conferences and other sponored events.

Join our community of explorers. First, sign up for our email updates. Read more about what we stand for. Then explore this website, designed for the curious, truth-seeking, independent-minded individual.

The Objectivist Movement

The Atlas Society was founded by David Kelley as The Institute for Objectivist Studies in 1990. In his statement at the Institute's founding (since published in The Contested Legacy of Ayn Rand), David Kelley called for an open, intellectually tolerant Objectivist movement characterized by a benevolent and rational sense of life. Today, The Atlas Society stands at the heart of this branch of the movement. Not all Objectivists and admirers of Ayn Rand have agreed with Dr. Kelley's vision, and the Objectivist movement continues to be divided against itself by intense and often personal differences and debates. In this section of our website, we provide resources that explain the open, benevolent approach to Objectivism and provide responses to criticisms directed at our program and work.

We promote open Objectivism: the philosophy of reason, achievement, individualism, and freedom.