The Fountainhead has become an enduring piece of literature, more popular now than when published in 1943. On the surface, it is a story of one man, Howard Roark, and his struggles as an architect in the face of a successful rival, Peter Keating, and a newspaper columnist, Ellsworth Toohey. But the book addresses a number of universal themes: the strength of the individual, the tug between good and evil, the threat of fascism. The confrontation of those themes, along with the amazing stroke of Rand's writing, combine to give this book its enduring influence.
In 1947, Ayn Rand wrote a pamphlet for the Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation of American Ideals, entitled “Screen Guide for Americans,” based on her personal impressions of the American film industry. Rand cited examples of popular and critically acclaimed films which in her view contained hidden Communist or “Collectivist” messages that had not been recognized as such, even by conservatives. Examples included “The Best Years of Our Lives” (because it portrayed businessmen negatively, and suggested that bankers should give veterans collateral-free loans) and “A Song to Remember” (because it implied that Chopin sacrificed himself for a patriotic cause rather than devoting himself to his music).
"Writers are made, not born," Ayn Rand wrote in another context. "To be exact, writers are self-made." In this fascinating collection of Ayn Rand's earliest work — including a previously unpublished piece, "The Night King" — her own career proves her point. We see here not only the budding of the philosophy that would seal her reputation as a champion of the individual, but also the emergence of a great narrative stylist whose fiction would place her among the most towering figures in the history of American literature.
Dr. Leonard Peikoff worked with Ayn Rand for thirty years; he is her legal heir and the executor of her estate.
In this searching and courageous work, Ayn Rand cuts through the haze of sentimentality and vague thinking that surrounds the subject of art. For the first time a precise definition is given to art, and a careful analysis made of its nature. With the uncompromising honesty Ayn Rand’s millions of readers have come to expect, the author presents a devastating case against both naturalistic and abstract art—and explains the force that drives her to write, and the goals she strives to attain. takes its place as a keystone book in the towering intellectual edifice raised by one of the most remarkable writers and thinkers of our age.