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What is Objectivism?

What is Objectivism?

David Kelley

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June 14, 2010

Question: What is Objectivism ?

Answer:  "My philosophy, in essence, is the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute."
           —
Ayn Rand, Appendix to Atlas Shrugged

Objectivism is the philosophy of rational individualism founded by Ayn Rand (1905-1982). Born in St. Petersburg, Russia, Rand witnessed the Bolshevik revolution. She emigrated to America where she worked in Hollywood and became a bestselling author of novels, most famously The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged.

Objectivism holds that there is no greater moral goal than achieving one's happiness. But one cannot achieve happiness by wish or whim. It requires rational respect for the facts of reality, including the facts about our human nature and needs. It requires living by objective principles, including moral integrity and respect for the rights of others. Politically, Objectivists advocate laissez-faire capitalism.

Objectivism is benevolent, holding that the universe is open to human achievement and happiness and that each person has within him the ability to live a rich, fulfilling, independent life.

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David Kelley

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

David Kelley

David Kelley is the founder of The Atlas Society. A professional philosopher, teacher, and best-selling author, he has been a leading proponent of Objectivism for more than 25 years.