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The Fountainhead Quote

Peter Keating: "Do you always have to have a purpose? Do you always have to be so serious? Can't you ever do things without reason, just like everybody else? You're so serious, so old. Everything's important with you. Everything's great, significant in some way, every minute, even when you keep still. Can't you ever be comfortable--and unimportant?" | Howard Roark: "No."
~ Ayn Rand Quotes from The Fountainhead

”This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.”


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In both The Fountainhead and Anthem, we as readers get to experience through Ayn Rand's heroic characters, the individual's power to rely on himself rather than be pushed by events or other people. The Ancient Greeks revered man's ability to reason, Ralph Waldo Emerson defended individualism and self-reliance, and Aldous Huxley spoke about the dangers of conformity. Although we do have to conform at times, we should always be mindful of the importance of individuality and the cost of sacrificing our beliefs for the sake of personal or material gain.
~ Drakakis, 2009



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Socratic Seminar Questions

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  1. What does Equality finally understand about his society when the Council threatens to destroy his invention?
  2. Which of your personal values or goals would be allowed in the society portrayed in Anthem?
  3. Prometheus reaches the important realization that "To be free,, a man must be free of his brothers..." Do you agree with this statement?
  4. What are your opinions of the Objectivist philosophy of Ayn Rand?

The Fountainhead
  1. Rand states that the theme of The Fountainhead is: "individualism vs. collectivism, not in politics but in men's souls." Do you agree with this statement?
  2. What do you find exciting and illuminating about this story? Explain
  3. Describe your reaction to The Fountainhead and to Anthem. Did you find the stories uplifting? Many people have found that reading Rand gave them the courage to pursue their own dreams. Do you agree? Explain
  4. Architecture was used as the basis for the plot in The Fountainhead. Would a different endeavor have served equally as well or was architecture the perfect fit for the story?
  5. What would the world be like if Roark's was the dominant ideology? Keating's? Toohey's?
  6. Watch Howard Roark's Speech to the jury and the scene with Roark deliberating with some clients, and the scene with Roark and Toohey Do you think the movie does the book justice?
  7. According to Rand, "the ego is the fountainhead of human achievement and progress." Do you agree or disagree?
  8. How does modern technology help or hurt our ego?