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 Objectivism in Perspective
 
Growing interest in Ayn Rand in US universities, despite detractors
Times Higher Education, India Thursday, July 16, 2009


An article by Jon Marcus in the Times Higher Education website gives a good insight into just how popular Ayn Rand is becoming in American Universities. He talks about the changing attitudes towards Ayn Rand and some of the initiatives that have recently been launched to popularize her ideas.

Here is an excerpt from the article: 

… … …

 

With stories on the financial news pages reading more and more like her seminal novel Atlas Shrugged, academic interest in Ms Rand, who died in 1982 aged 77, is booming.

 

"It's just so topical," said John McCaskey, who is introducing a course at Stanford University this autumn called "The Moral Foundations of Capitalism".

 

"The way things are going, half the people are saying it's all Ayn Rand's fault and the other half are saying Ayn Rand can solve it."

 

Among those who have found fault with her ideas during this economic crisis, blamed by many on too little government regulation rather than too much, is her one-time disciple, Alan Greenspan, the long-time chairman of the US Federal Reserve Bank.

 

But love her or hate her, Ms Rand is again popping up in American university classrooms, even though her work has been marginalised for years.

 

"The philosophical approach to the current economic situation is what really intrigues both students and faculty," said Dr McCaskey. "There is a revival going on."

… … …

 

Even many of the professors who now teach Rand, Dr McCaskey said, "will preface their presentations with, 'I don't agree with this, but you should hear it'".Some of them, he said, feel there has been a dereliction of duty in the past: "How can I have been teaching American capitalism but not have been teaching Rand?"

 

Click here (http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/story.asp?sectioncode=26&storycode=407357&c=1) to read the complete article.

 

Note: Prof Alan Gotthelf, who is quoted in the original article, has clarified in one of the comments on the article that he is co-editing a volume for Wiley-Blackwell, to be called *Ayn Rand: A Companion to Her Works and Thought*, (forthcoming 2010).
This article was published in the Times Higher Education on Thursday, July 16, 2009. Please read the original article here.
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