To H. Riga, a Canadian high school teacher and Estonian émigré [Letter 520]

Item Reference Code: 039_06A_005_001

Date(s) of creation

May 2, 1964


H. Riga


May 2, 1964

Mr. H. Riga
167 Chaplin Cres.
Toronto 7, Canada

Dear Mr. Riga:

Thank you for your letter of April 23.

I appreciate your interest in my philosophy, and I feel a profound sympathy for all those who chose exile in preference to communist rule.

However, I do not approve of your plan to arrange a contest among students for “the best critical approach” to my philosophy—and, therefore, I cannot grant you permission to use excerpts from my work for this purpose.

My reasons are as follows: I never engage in debates about my philosophy; I do not approve of subjecting a philosophical system to the confusions, misrepresentations and distortions of immature and untrained mentalities; such an attempt can lead only to intellectual chaos—and I can neither sanction it nor have any part in it.

As to your question regarding my name, it is a contraction of the Finnish name “Aino.”



Ayn Rand