In The Fountainhead, Ayn Rand offers a radical rethinking of basic moral concepts. In particular, she rejects the conventional view of what it means to be selfish and what it means to be selfless. In this lesson — the first of two lessons analyzing themes of The Fountainhead — we invite you to explore Rand’s reconceptualization of these concepts and to consider how these ethical themes are exemplified by the choices and actions of the different characters in the novel.

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