Ayn Rand stated the theme of The Fountainhead as: “individualism versus collectivism, not in politics, but in man’s soul.” In this lesson — the second of two lessons analyzing themes of The Fountainhead — you’ll explore the meaning and implications of this idea. In what ways are Howard Roark and Ellsworth Toohey the embodiments of these opposite principles? What is it that motivates Roark and animates his choices and actions? And what does the character of Ellsworth Toohey have to teach us about the true meaning and goals of altruism?

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