Enrich your classroom with free copies of Ayn Rand’s classic, thought-provoking literature.
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Our program makes it easy for you to get what you need for your classroom.
Since 2002, more than 70,000 teachers have received free copies of Rand’s novels for their classrooms. Here’s why:
Ayn Rand’s novels appeal to young readers like few other books do. They are rich with dramatic storytelling, strong and complex characters, and enduring themes. They also challenge students to think more deeply about the world, about the choices they make in their lives, and about what kind of person they want to become.
In addition to the books, we also provide teachers with dozens of free resources to make it easier to incorporate the books into a curriculum and spark in-class discussion—from teacher’s guides and lesson plans to chapter lead-in videos and virtual classroom Q&As with our team of experts.
During her own lifetime, Ayn Rand became a famous and controversial figure. A best-selling author, she also carried her message to university classrooms, to Hollywood, to Congress, to the editorial page, to talk shows and radio programs. Her presence has only increased since her death in 1982, as her philosophy has become more well-known. Today, her books have sold in the millions, and she’s the subject of an Oscar-nominated documentary, a U.S. postage stamp, university courses, and a philosophical society devoted to the study of her thought.
Fueled by her vision of man as a heroic being and by the original philosophy behind it, more and more people, from all walks of life, from businessmen to students to professors to athletes to artists, are saying the same thing: “Ayn Rand’s writings changed my life.”
This program is made possible by the donors of the Ayn Rand Institute, and especially the following individuals and organizations, who want to give students the opportunity to read and discuss Rand’s novels in school.
The Ayn Rand Institute offers a variety of educational experiences to promote greater understanding of Ayn Rand’s philosophy and, through the writing and speaking of our experts, advocates her principles of reason, rational self-interest and laissez-faire capitalism. Learn more about ways to support us.
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Anthem is Ayn Rand’s “hymn to man’s ego.” It is the story of one man’s rebellion against a totalitarian, collectivist society. Equality 7-2521 is a young man who yearns to understand “the Science of Things.” But he lives in a bleak, dystopian future where independent thought is a crime and where science and technology have regressed to primitive levels.
All expressions of individualism have been suppressed in the world of Anthem; personal possessions are nonexistent, individual preferences are condemned as sinful and romantic love is forbidden. Obedience to the collective is so deeply ingrained that the very word “I” has been erased from the language.
In pursuit of his quest for knowledge, Equality 7-2521 struggles to answer the questions that burn within him — questions that ultimately lead him to uncover the mystery behind his society’s downfall and to find the key to a future of freedom and progress.
Anthem anticipates the theme of Rand’s first best seller, The Fountainhead, which she stated as “individualism versus collectivism, not in politics, but in man’s soul.”
What motivates a creative thinker?
Is it a selfless desire to benefit mankind? A hunger for fame, fortune, and accolades? The need to prove superiority? Or is it a self-sufficient drive to pursue a creative vision, independent of others’ needs or opinions?
Ayn Rand addresses these questions through her portrayal of Howard Roark, an innovative architect who, as she puts it, “struggles for the integrity of his creative work against every form of social opposition.”
Initially rejected by twelve publishers as “too intellectual,” The Fountainhead became a best seller within two years purely through word of mouth, and earned Rand enduring commercial and artistic success.
The novel was also a personal landmark for Rand. In Howard Roark, she presented for the first time the uniquely Ayn Rand hero, whose depiction was the chief goal of her writing: the ideal man, man as “he could be and ought to be.”
The setting is Soviet Russia, early 1920s. Kira Argounova, a university engineering student who wants a career building bridges, falls in love with Leo Kovalensky, son of a czarist hero. Both Kira and Leo yearn to shape their own future — but they are trapped in a communist state that claims the right to sacrifice individual lives for the sake of the collective.
When Kira is kicked out of the university as an undesirable and Leo’s past makes him unemployable, life becomes a grim struggle for physical survival. Leo contracts tuberculosis but can’t get admitted to a state sanitarium, despite Kira’s best efforts. Desperate, she seeks help from Andrei Taganov, an ardent young communist whose love for Kira helps awaken him to the meaning of genuine personal values, not to be surrendered for others’ sake.
Once these two men are destroyed — Andrei by his disillusionment with communism, and Leo by his inability to go on fighting — Kira tries to flee, but will she find it possible to defy the state’s power?
With adoring fans, rabid critics and very few in between, why does Atlas Shrugged evoke such impassioned responses? Because it grapples with the fundamental problems of human existence — and presents radically new answers.
Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand’s last novel, is a dramatization of her unique vision of existence and of man’s highest potential. Twelve years in the writing, it is her masterwork.
Is the pursuit of profit a noble enterprise or the root of all evil? Is sexual passion an exalted spiritual virtue or a dirty, animalistic vice? Is reason an absolute or is faith an alternative source of truth? Is self-esteem possible or are we consigned to a life of self-doubt and guilt? In what kind of society can an individual prosper, and in what kind of society is he doomed to the opposite fate?
Rand’s worldview emerges in the compelling plot turns of a mystery story, centered on the question “Who is John Galt?”