The first time I came across Ayn Rand was through a film call “The Passion of Ayn Rand”, starring Helen Mirren. It talked about Ayn Rand’s affair with an associate of hers, who enabled her to write her great work: Atlas Shrugged. At the end the associate and her broke off, which caused a lot of scenes and put her into bitter ends.
I then later came across more of her work, firstly Atlas Shrugged – because it was mentioned in the Ayn Rand film, then The Fountainhead. The story was about the fight between originality and tradition when talk of art and creativity, Howard Roark the main character fought his way to be accepted by the public with his originality, while the society generally endorsed the traditional styles. It was a film many talented people would’ve related themselves with, because of the ability to keep on and endurance they have to deal with while creating. The film was lovely – very simple and clean, Patricia Neal was a nice strong looking person in the film – I was certain she would’ve been brilliant to play Ayn Rand (they looked quite alike).
Then there was “Atlas Shrugged” – it was the most talked-about work of Ayn Rand in her life-time and after the death. The story focused on Dagny Taggart, a CEO of a rail company owned by family. She lived in a period that government seemed want to control absolutely everything, which would mean the individuals would have nothing left even they paid their hard-work. Then she began to panic when more and more inventors strangely disappeared, so she teamed up with Hank Readen the provider of the metal she needed for the rail-tracks of her latest line to find out what happened. In many ways the novels questioned the rights of individuals to rely themselves on others, or the rights for individuals to be selfish and care for themselves first. In this case I would say it’s a situation-based matter, sometimes we indeed have to care for ourselves first. The novel in itself was quite exciting, in most pages it really got me going (apart from the 70 pages long speech, which I felt unnecessary)…
I hope you enjoy her writing despite all, she wrote interesting things even some of her ideals indeed deemed questionable.