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New Ideal - Reason | Individualism | Capitalism

Soon Online for Free: In-Depth Essays on Ayn Rand’s Novels

New Ideal will publish selected chapters from Robert Mayhew’s important collections.

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The Ayn Rand Institute is bringing online scores of in-depth historical, literary and philosophic essays on Ayn Rand’s novels. These essays — originally included in four scholarly books edited by Robert Mayhew — will be accessible to anyone, anywhere on the globe, for free.

“Interest in Ayn Rand is not only growing in the United States, it’s a worldwide phenomenon,” noted Elan Journo, ARI’s vice president of content. “That’s clear from sales of her books, from our website traffic, and from the number of students in our conferences, reading groups, and courses. Now, everyone seriously exploring Rand’s ideas can freely read these insightful essays.”

Many of the essays make extensive use of previously unpublished material from the Ayn Rand Archives. The first essay, which will be published in New Ideal this week, ties in with — and promises to greatly enhance — the Archives’s new online exhibit, “Blueprints for The Fountainhead.” The essay, titled “The Fountainhead from Notebook to Novel: The Composition of Ayn Rand’s First Ideal Man,” is an in-depth study by Shoshana Milgram, using archival materials now showcased in the new exhibit.

The first book in the series was Essays on Ayn Rand’s “We the Living” (2004; expanded 2012), followed by Essays on Ayn Rand’s “Anthem” (2005). Next came Essays on Ayn Rand’s “The Fountainhead” (2007) and Essays on Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged” (2009). The books feature contributions from some of the world’s most knowledgeable Objectivist scholars: Leonard Peikoff, Onkar Ghate, Tara Smith, Tore Boeckmann, Shoshana Milgram, Gregory Salmieri, Allan Gotthelf, Darryl Wright and others. Each volume is unique, but there are commonalities — each contains essays on Rand’s creative process, her literary influences and inspirations, the novels’ publishing and adaptation histories, comparisons to other fiction, and deep analysis of important themes and characters.

READ ALSO:  Celebrating 80 Years of The Fountainhead

“Education is core to ARI’s mission, and it’s why we were eager to bring these essays to a wider audience,” observed Journo. “It’s also why a significant number of contributors to these books are members of the Ayn Rand University faculty.” 

For many years, the books in Mayhew’s Essays series have been available only in formats expensively priced for the academic market. Now, by special arrangement with the publisher, Rowman & Littlefield, the Institute will feature almost seventy essays from those volumes for free on New Ideal. “We’re grateful to ARI’s donors for enabling us to bring these valuable educational resources to our students and the wider public,” said Journo.

'Education is core to ARI’s mission, and it’s why we were eager to bring these essays to a wider audience' Click To Tweet

New Ideal, which recently celebrated its fifth anniversary, will publish essays from the Mayhew series each week, augmenting its regular stream of articles and podcasts. Said Journo: “The essays from the Mayhew books have the power to greatly enrich the public understanding of, and appreciation for, Ayn Rand as a novelist and a seminal philosopher.”


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Tom Bowden

Tom Bowden, JD and former civil litigator, is a research fellow and publishing manager at the Ayn Rand Institute. He is also a coeditor of Illuminating Ayn Rand (2022) and a contributing editor of New Ideal.

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