Ayn Rand and Malcolm Gladwell link (Blink!)

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I have long extolled the philosophical writings of Ayn Rand. In the States, in certain circles, her name and writings are typically well known. In Paris, other than my wife (who is a big fan, too), I have yet to find a French person who knows her. Atlas Shrugged (La Révolte d’Atlas) and The Fountainhead (La Source Vive) have been seminal books in my life. Finding an Any Rand in French bookstores is already a major challenge. [Pour mes amis français: Amazon lien pour La Source Vive, mais La Révolte d’Atlas n’est pas disponible sur Amazon! Un forum intéressant entretemps]. Another book I enjoyed, along with the intimate million people was Malcolm Gladwell’s Blink. Well, just recently I ran(d) into an article  (critique) demonstrating the link between Blink and Ayn Rand’s objectivism, citing in particular “The Romantic Manifesto.” And for you Rand fans, here’s a glimpse of a fan club site (altho member signup needed) The Atlastphere.

7 Comments, RSS

  1. Minter

    It’s a ‘pavé’ as they say in French. The writing style has not aged well I’m afraid. When I re-read it, well after my idealistic university days, I cringed a bit at the style. But, the content remained perfectly interesting to me. Further, I had temptations to make interesting links to our residential country… If I had to pick a first Ayn Rand book, I’d go with The Fountainhead. Shorter, more gripping in my mind. Her philosophy is sublimely portrayed through the main protagonist Howard Roark. Do let me know how you like it if you go for it. And, when’s your birthday anyway?

  2. NeOneL

    Hi, I’m glad that you enjoy Ayn Rand’s work as much as I do; there are so few of us who have been truly affected by her philosophy. I’m commenting because I’m desparetly trying to find myself a copy of La Revolte d’Atlas. I am trying to find the French translation of Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand to give my girlfriend as a one year anniversary present. We both love Ayn Rand (I gave her La Source Vive at our six month) but since English is a second language for her I wanted to find a copy of Atlas in French. I am aware of its scarcity and was wondering if there was anyway you could help me track it down. If you have any information or can possibly find a copy for me I would greatly appreciate the help.

    Thank you so much.

    All the best,

    -Anthony

  3. Minter

    @NeOneL Sorry to say that my efforts to find the book in French failed as well. I wanted to get a copy for my Ukrainian/French friend but had to settle for the English version. Amazon.fr doesn’t have any listing. Ebay and craigslist type sites might be your best bet…over time. Good luck Anthony.

  4. John Milton

    Just came across your website dialog looking for a translation of Gladwell’s “Blink” for a French friend of mine and saw the link made between this novel and Ayn Rand. I have long loved her work and her novels and philosophy had an impact on me in my younger years. It is sad indeed that she has lost some of her momentum position as a novelist/philosopher nowadays and in France never found foot on the ground till recently as Atlas Shrugged was finally translated as “La Grève” by Sophie Bastide-Foltz and published by “Les Belles Lettres”. As subtly but evidently said by Alain Laurent : ” Les convictions politico-philosophiques de Rand contredisent radicalement l’exception idéologique française du tout-État et du tout-social “. John.

  5. Hi John,

    For those of us Ayn Rand fans living in France, we are certainly living in some kind of an ideological struggle! Thanks for pointing out the translation of La Grève! What a straight forward title, eh? Here’s a link to the book on Amazon. http://www.amazon.fr/La-Gr%C3%A8ve-Shrugged-Ayn-Rand/dp/2251444173

    Meanwhile, Ayn Rand is back in the news with the announcement of VP Paul Ryan, another Ayn Rand acolyte. Just a few days ago, there was an article published on BBC, worth the read: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-19280545

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