In this lesson, you’ll study The Fountainhead’s Gail Wynand, who rose from the slums to wealth and influence as the owner of a powerful media empire. In Wynand’s view, one’s only choice in life is to rule or be ruled. He pursues power over men by pandering to the public taste, feeding the public’s hunger for vulgarity and sensationalism and establishing his newspapers as the voice of public opinion. But does he really control the public, or does it control him? Who has power over whom? What happens when Wynand tries to steer public opinion to fight for something he actually believes in?

Spoiler alert: This lesson assumes that students have read The Fountainhead.