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Atlas Shrugged [Abridged, Audiobook] [Audio CD]

Ayn Rand , Edward Herrmann
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,189 customer reviews)
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Book Description

May 25 2000
"Who is John Galt?" is the immortal question posed at the beginning of Ayn Rand's masterpiece. The answer is the astonishing story of a man who said he would stop the motor of the world—and did. As passionate as it is profound, Atlas Shrugged is one of the most influential novels of our time. In it, Rand dramatizes the main tenets of Objectivism, her philosophy of rational selfishness. She explores the ramifications of her radical thinking in a world that penalizes human intelligence and integrity. Part mystery, part thriller, part philosophical inquiry, part volatile love affair, Atlas Shrugged is the book that confirmed Ayn Rand as one of the most popular novelist and most respected thinkers of the 20th century.

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Winner of the Listen Up Award-Best Packaging/Cover Art of 1996 [brought to you by HighBridge Audio] -- Publishers Weekly, January 6, 1997 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author



AYN RAND is the author of Anthem, The Fountainhead, and Atlas Shrugged, and numerous non-fiction essays on philosophy, ethics, politics, art, and literature. Her philosophy, Objectivism, has gained a worldwide audience of adherents and admirers. She died in March 1982.

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"Who is John Galt?" The light was ebbing, and Eddie Willers could not distinguish the bum's face. Read the first page
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Most helpful customer reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Buy another edition of this book May 25 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
This edition of the book is not too great. The font is too small and the pages are hard to open, so I would recommend buying another version of the book.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Philisophical Fiction .... What a "Novel" Idea! June 5 2011
By B. Breen TOP 500 REVIEWER
Yes, this is a classic work and valuable primarily as a presentation of Ayn Rand's Philosphophy of Objectivism. It's a pretty good presentation of how life might look and feel if you were to eliminate all subjective and emotional human responses to life and more importantly create a government that only minimally intrudes upon those thinkers, inventors and producers who utilize capitalism to its most efficient ends.

In fact, I think that's why it does a good job of what's it "objectively" sets out to do. As evidenced by the myriad of reviews all over the map, it achieves its goal by spurring thought and evaluation of the philosophy of objectivism and more importantly what the balance must be between individualism and the corporate needs of society and the role of government in balancing them.

As a novel, it is long, it rambles and it could use some editing. But then again, that's a "subjective evaluation" and who is to say that the philosophy itself does not render it to be as it is.

I know many come to this work as required reading and as the audience is young there tends to be a pretty strong reaction to the content of the philosophy, either setting aside all idealism or embracing the cold, hard automaton thinking of the protagonist Rand creates.

In fact, I think reality lies between those two extremes. There is much to be said in favor of Rand's conclusions coming from a totalitarian idealistic Soviet Union that causes her to react so strongly against it and advocate an austere personal capitalism.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Literature March 29 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Extroidinary literature but may not be the place to start if you are not acquainted with Ayn Rand.
Anyway, after reading many of the reviews, I have noticed that even the people who loved the book have an erroneous idea of what Ayn Rand was saying.
First of all, ethically selfishness or self-interest means you have a right to your own life, that you own it and can dispose of it as you want, without imposing force on others. It does not mean you have the right TO DO ANYTHING YOU WANT OR TO IMPOSE YOURSELF ON OTHERS. It means you own your life, and are free to live it in the manner you deem right for yourself. In a political context, it means the government is prohibited from imposing itself on your life, by for example drafting you into the military, or prohibiting you from entering a certain career field.
When Ayn Rand attacked altruism and its component part self-sacrifice SHE WAS NOT ATTACKING HELPING OTHERS, OR DOING GOOD THINGS FOR OTHERS, OR BENEVOLENTLY SPREADING GOOD WILL IN THE WORLD. What she was attacking was the fundamental principle of altruism that YOUR LIFE BELONGS TO OTHERS AND CAN BE DISPOSED OF WITHOUT YOUR CONSENT.
We see the consequences of altruism all over the world. People living without the ability to own their lives. Cuba is a prime example. The communist party and Fidel Castro are the owners of everyone's life. They control and direct it with impunity. One has little or no control.
Helping others and spreading good will is as much a part of successful living as living and breathing, but when people are FORCED to sacrifice their lives in the name of helping others, state coercion follows, and this is the evil, Ayn Rand so eloquently refers to in Atlas Shrugged and her other writing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Philosophy March 18 2013
Format:School & Library Binding|Verified Purchase
I found the opinions expressed through Ayn Rands persuasive writing to be very interesting. Even when i disagreed will her philosophy, I was still thankful for her thought inspiring arguments, for causing me to doubt my own beliefs. Overall I found this to be a great read for any philosophical mind.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
With more than a thousand reviews already online, it may not accomplish much to add one more, but I will try. (SPOILER ALERT)

I have read through all the one-star reviews, and I see three broad themes.

1) Rand's ideas are morally objectionable, false, and anyway not original to her.

2) The novel is too long, too abstractly intellectual, and its characters are not realistic or believable.

3) The tone of the writing is angry, belligerent, and filled with hate.

I want to address this third point, which I think is the most damaging and contentious. Greg Nyquist says the book exhibits 'furious, unbridled hatred towards those who do not agree' and that Rand 'desired some kind of awful punishment to be visited' on them. Others say similar things.

Leaving aside for the moment whether this charge is true, even partially, of Atlas Shrugged, it is not true of any of Rand's other novels. No one reading Anthem or The Fountainhead or We The Living comes away thinking that Rand hates her readers, or even just those readers who disagree with her. It is not an essential part of Rand's fiction-writing style to project angry hatred of those who disagree.

There are long stretches in Atlas Shrugged that resemble Rand's earlier work in that she is just describing the action -- Dagny's childhood, or the development of Rearden Metal, or the various political crises and how Taggart Transcontinental must cope with them. For a reader to feel hated when reading these passages means identifying in a personal way with the villains. Some people do manage to do this.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Who is John Galt
Look around, it is real. When Rand wrote this book, she was basing it on what she had witnessed, we had better pay attention and start to take a voting interest....
Published 2 months ago by MH
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing read
Absolutely stunning. A great look at a dystopian country which far from real, with lessons that can be applied to current day situations.
Published 2 months ago by Eric McAskill
1.0 out of 5 stars Not a good book on any level, by any criteria.
Shudders still echo through my mind from reading that so-called "magnum opus" of Rand's, Atlas Shrugged. Should have been called Rand Flubbed. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Dino Snider
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed the story but the font! for the love of Og the font!
I know opinions vary on this book., and I personally like the story.

I purchase this copy for my husband who had never read it ( I figured he should before Hollywood... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Sylvie Couture
5.0 out of 5 stars Great philosophical book!
I deeply enjoyed Atlas Shrugged as it shows a reflect of our actual modern society. I recommend it to everybody!
Published 5 months ago by Alexandre
5.0 out of 5 stars Must read!
I read this book the first time some 30 years ago and 4 times since then. It should be a required read for life. I bought this for my son.
Published 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
2.0 out of 5 stars Write a paper
I kept feeling like Ayn Rand was hitting me over the head with her philosophy. It just felt userous of the characters to have to go through so much to make a point that could so... Read more
Published 10 months ago by J.B.
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the longest novels ever written
Legendary novel for those who share Ms. Rands ideas of objectivism. I was skeptical at first, but it's definitely opened my eyes on how I see the world now. I thoroughly enjoy it!
Published 10 months ago by Mikael Sabic
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating take on the socialization of America
I couldn't put this book down. Ayn Rand is/was a wonderful writer and she managed to put her political beliefs into an excellent love/mystery story. Read more
Published 11 months ago by T. Beninger
3.0 out of 5 stars Just can't read it!?!
I'm a Libertarian and an Objectivist at heart. The Ayn Rand Objectivism philosophy is a lot like mine. But I just can't read a thousand, small characters, pages. Read more
Published 14 months ago by P.Y.GOD
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