Question: How does Max Stirner’s egoism compare to Objectivism?
Answer: Well, Objectivism holds that individuals’ lives are their own, that their self-responsibility is to use their reason to formulate their values and a strategy for achieving them. Socially, Objectivism holds with the trader principle that rational individuals can interact voluntarily to mutual benefit, and that should be the norm in society. By contrast, Stirner is an anti-rationalist. He holds that one’s reason is a subjective, constraining capacity that we have that holds back one’s true self-development. Consequently, in Stirner’s account, one has to take an adversarial stance not only against society with all of its arbitrary rules and restrictions, but also against one’s own reason and emotions very often, which he sees as undermining true development. He’s an anarchist egoist in contrast to Rand’s objectivist egoism.