In her novella Anthem, Ayn Rand explored ideas that would later figure in her radical rethinking of our basic moral concepts. In this lesson, you’ll explore some of the themes of Anthem, focusing on Rand’s critique of collectivism and the individualist credo she upheld instead. Viewing collectivism as much more than a political doctrine, Rand sought to understand the philosophical ideas underlying its political evils. What does it mean for people to embrace collectivism as a basic view of life? And what does collectivism look like as a feature of the human soul?

Spoiler alert: This lesson assumes that students have read Anthem.