“Reading [Ayn] Rand seriously,” writes Gregory Salmieri, “as opposed to merely reacting passively to her writings, is demanding intellectual work.” In this essay, which is chapter 1 of A Companion to Ayn Rand (Blackwell Companions to Philosophy) (2015), co-authored with Allan Gotthelf, Salmieri notes the stark contrast between the extent of Rand’s cultural prominence and the dearth of serious scholarly attention to her philosophy, Objectivism. Acknowledging the obstacles to understanding a radical thinker who challenged conventional wisdom in every branch of philosophy, Salmieri describes the rewards that await readers willing to consider Rand’s systematic philosophy on its own terms. Besides summarizing Rand’s works, this wide-ranging essay also discusses the essentials of Objectivism, its Aristotelian influences, its relation to Rand’s novels and its influence to date in the field of philosophy.

“An Introduction to the Study of Ayn Rand” is available from the publisher by clicking here.

About the Author

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Gregory Salmieri
Dr. Salmieri is a senior scholar of philosophy in the Salem Center at the University of Texas, Austin. He holds the Brigham Fellowship for the Study of Objectivism and is director of the Center’s Program for Objectivity in Thought, Action, and Enterprise. Dr. Salmieri is the co-editor of A Companion to Ayn Rand and Foundations of a Free Society.