Monday, 14 December 2009

Twitter -Day 2, Ayn Rand -round 2

I'm getting a bit better at tweeting -I'm now learning to use TweetDeck, which I find can be a big help to keep track of my tweets, but is not without its perils. For example, I now have quite a few columns that sort out nicely the lists and people I follow, but they don't all fit in the width of my screen...It's great for multitasking (well, bi-tasking) though, so I can now visit websites and
follow tweets. And the feeling of being in a rollercoaster is beginning to go away, as is my problem with the 140-character-limit.

I'm putting the online organisers on hold, because I'm meeting my reading group on Thursday to discuss the work of Ayn Rand (second round) and I'd like to finish Atlas Shrugged. I have to say -almost 20 years apart from Anthem, I feel I can still see stitches. Perhaps she wanted it that way, but if she did, it bugs me that she wrote about the same issues in her non-fiction works. Did she see in the novel the instrument to apply her philosophical theory? She claims in the Romantic Manifesto that she's a Romantic writer because, unlike Naturalists, what's important in her fiction is the plot. I'm inclined to disagree based on what I've read so far.

As for the stitches, to me, Anthem expresses the lack of individual status in a social organization, and Atlas -it seems so far- the emergence of a system where individuality primes and the way of doing business is changing; social bonds don't matter if they don't contribute to business.

Interestingly, while the hero in Anthem -the one that finds his individuality- is a man, the one with nerves of steel for business in Atlas is a woman.

One of the things I'm curious about is whether the poliphony I'm finding now will continue throughout the rest of the novel. It's also interesting that (now that I'm writing I notice) both stories have two strong figures each and that these, in each story, are a man and a woman. It may cease to be interesting -I don't know. And if Anthem reminded me of Shirley Valentine, Atlas takes me back to Albee and Who's afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Who's John Galt?

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