The Fountainhead Essay

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Corona, Apr 24, 2007.

  1. Corona

    Corona Registered Member

    This is my essay I wrote on The Fountainhead. I bet I place well.


    A man stripped of his pride is stripped of his soul. An egotist, a creator, takes pride in his work; he takes pride in his accomplishments, but the altruist, the looter, must steal from the creator, both his pride and his accomplishment, in order to live, because he is either too asinine or too apathetic to live independently. There are only two forms of men, those who live by reason, and by their ego, and looters, those who must cling to the men with enough strength and vision to support life. These two types are not compatible. Such is the nature of the conflict between the altruist and the egotist.
    Since man has lived on this Earth, he has had his mind as his only tool for his survival. Man had to adapt, improvise, and work in order that he may achieve a life worth living. All adaptations, all improvisations, and all work has been done by creators, by egotists. Nothing that has furthered man has ever come from an altruist. Nothing has ever come from an altruist anyway, except for the means to entrap and enslave other men. The altruist is the ultimate slave driver, not because he is liberal with his whip, but because he makes the slave want to whip himself. The relationship of the second-hander to the producer is a relationship of parasite to host, and of guilt to the conscience.
    The second-hander has no concept of self; he only has a blurry image of others’ concepts of him. He does not know himself. We see this in the form of Peter Keating, a man totally devoid of ego, a man with nothing but the reflections of himself in other’s eyes. Peter Keating was the antithesis of an egotist; he was an absolute altruist, and at the end of the novel, he was reduced to begging. He begs Howard Roark to lend him his vision. Howard Roark designs Cortland for him on the condition that it must be done his way. He offered Keating a deal, man to man. He offered him a mutual trade, for mutual benefit. All Roark wanted was to see his vision complete in physical form. Roark did not receive his payment, Keating did not uphold his side of the contract, and thus the contract was void. Cortland is a superb example of the conflict between producer and looter. It is a society begging a man to save it, while all the time cursing him and stabbing him in the back.
    Societies and civilizations are built by men like Howard Roark and destroyed by men like Ellsworth Toohey. Men like Howard Roark are the impetus behind humanity; they are the men who construct cities and ideas, structures, and painting. Men who cannot create for themselves, like Toohey and Keating, need men such as Howard Roark to carry on the momentum of society. They need them, and because of this they hate them. They hate them because they are made to look inferior in the eyes of other men, which brings us to why looters need other looters. They need them to validate themselves, to tell them they are good and beautiful because when confronted with the light that shines from men like Howard Roark, John Galt, Dagny Taggart, and Hank Rearden, they see what wretched creatures they are, and they must hide from that, lest the truth destroy them.
    Men must think for themselves. They must decide and judge and reason for themselves, because dependence is slavery and independence is freedom. The function of judgment is a function of the ego, and therefore, the altruist is not able to judge, or to reason, or to decide. He must have other men, his “brothers”, decide for him. He does not have the strength or courage to trust himself.
    A man who is capable of reason, but uses it only to feed off others is the most wretched form of man. Gail Wynand is this kind of man. Mr. Wynand knows his beliefs and values, but he suppresses them, so that he may gain power. A man who seeks power is the worst kind of second-hander, worse than the one who seeks food, shelter, or safety. A man that wants power wants nothing but to force himself upon others, he wants nothing more than to make those under him follow his orders, to force men to think what he thinks.
    Force is not a viable argument. The application of force as a deciding entity is completely opposite to what the egotist stands for, which is freedom. An egotist refuses to bow to the will of others and will bow only to logic. This is the heart of the conflict of egotist vs. altruist. It is the conflict of reason against chaos, of logic against faith.


    Argue with it if you wish, but I'm too intellectually exhausted to write a rebuttal.

    +Rep me if you like it :D
     

  2. Kazmarov

    Kazmarov For a Free Scotland

    Move to Lit, please.

    I don't like your sentence structure throughout. Your intro in particular chooses commas over emphasis in punctuation.

    I can't comment on the source material (I happen to think objectivism is a crock), I do find that the notion that the alturist and the egotist are somehow different entities (the ego and the super-ego are influenced both by the id, and thus are indistinguisable in their goals) to be a rash proposal. Also, the egotist does not bow to logic, by becoming an egotist in the first place they distort true logic because they are focused soley on a personal agenda.

    I disliked it personally.
     
  3. Corona, was this for a H.S. or college essay?

    Have you read any other of Ayn Rand's books, and by choice or because it was subject matter in school?

    Corona, while all here in this forum may not agree with, nor understand, your essay nonetheless shows you took some time and thought into creating it. Not all people understand what objectivism is. Objectivism have some very libertarian qualities to it, because it deals with the individual's basic right to personal freedoms. And it does not condone the use of force, which is another Libertarian ideal.
     
  4. Corona

    Corona Registered Member

    @Lib- I've read all her books, except We The Living. Multiple times. Also, it was for the Fountainhead Essay Contest, which my teacher made us do.

    @Kaz- I've changed the grammar a bit, as well as correcting minor errors. And If you don't like it, thats your choice.
     
  5. Kyo_Muramasa

    Kyo_Muramasa Nefarious Kaizoku Capt'n

    I wish I could read this, but until I finish the book I can't cause it might spoil stuff for me. I read anthem though and that one was kind of good, but boring at some parts to be a short book.

    But I cheated myself and read the first paragraph, it's awesome but I can see some comma splices in my opinion here and there^^;
     
  6. Kazmarov

    Kazmarov For a Free Scotland

    Really? I can't believe a teacher would make you write an essay for such a discredited institute. I'm pretty sure some of the recent comments from the institute are punishable under law in several countries.

    It's for an essay contest, and I understand it has to propogate the objectivist viewpoint. What I'm saying is that by doing so you are being a disengenous writer by writing something that is philsophically incorrect.
     
  7. Corona

    Corona Registered Member

    To be honest though, I have adapted large parts of the objectivist philosophy into my personal philosophy.
     
  8. SgtCrom

    SgtCrom Registered Member

    Nothing to say.
     
  9. Kazmarov

    Kazmarov For a Free Scotland

    Both from the Wikipedia article on the Institute.
     
  10. Corona

    Corona Registered Member

    You don't have to agree with the Institute to be an objectivist. To be honest, from what I've read I've heard that they waste a lot of money, ironic considering their founder, and they have a few contradictory views.
     

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