Ayn Rand and the Unreality of Objectivism

[No one, according to Heller’s portrait, struggled with the unreality of Objectivism more than Rand herself. She wept, throughout her life, at the world’s refusal to conform to her ideal vision of it. Although she claimed that “one must never attempt to fake reality in any manner,” she repeatedly withheld or distorted facts to feed her own mythology. (When she died, in 1982, none of her followers even knew her real name.) She carried on an increasingly toxic sexual affair with a married disciple 25 years her junior; when he had his own affair with a younger woman, Rand slapped him, excommunicated him, and falsely accused him of embezzlement. Her special brand of reasoning led her to some unreasonably ugly positions—e.g., that homosexuality is “disgusting” (which caused gay Objectivists to pretend to be straight); that Native Americans, having failed for millennia to create a heroically productive capitalist society, deserved to be stripped of their land; that women are ideally “hero worshippers” who should submit themselves, body and soul, to great men….]   Read the full article | NEW YORK MAGAZINE



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