Atlas Shrugged Study Guide

Atlas Shrugged Study Guide

“Atlas Shrugged” is a multidimensional novel written by Ayn Rand in 1957. Even though it wasn’t an immediate success, the author considered it her greatest work. She has invested a great deal of mystery, scientific facts, romance and philosophic thoughts into the novel.

The plot of the book is a dystopian imagination of the author. It is set in the United States under the conditions where socialism reins in the economy. Due to ineffective management of resources, the businesses are closing down and skilled people are losing any interest to keep going.

Instead of being a successful copper mill manager, Francisco becomes a playboy. While his lover, Dagny, is still trying to save Rio Norte Line. She is a successful entrepreneur and a very enthusiastic person, but the government imposes more and more measures on her. These measures hinder her business development and try to limit her as a person. The bright and talented people around her start to disappear.

Eventually, Dagny joins the other missing industrialists in the mountains. They announce a strike. The government imposes even more strict and repressive laws on the society. The government also uses Dagny’s personal connections to blackmail her and people around her to publicly support the new restrictions.

The author defends her characters’ rights to preserve their own opinions, mind, and reason till the very end. In the conditions when capitalism considers individual opinion a threat, she manifests that reason and individualism are good not only for the mental health of the people. Using one’s mind is good first of all for the society and development of the economy in general.

Ayn Rand wrote a very sleek, logical, fascinating book based on a difficult philosophy. Despite the dystopian genre, the book reassured every reader his right for happiness, reason, caring for himself. It tells you that you can pursue your beloved career and be happy.


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