The Fountainhead really opens your eyes to the way many people tend to live their lives putting a major focus on what others say or think as opposed to being original and living their life. Wholly unashamed of their position not needing any approval to be themselves.
Thoreau's Walden ("Reading") and Ayn Rand's introduction to The Fountainhead (25th anniversary edition) summarize my library well.
This was my first Rand novel. It was a coin flip between this and Atlas Shrugged where if I liked one, I would read the other. The Fountainhead was not without imperfections, but was well worth the time and credit.
Rand is over-the-top and polarized with her individualist message, creating characters and scenes that are too fantastic to be rooted in reality, but it serves her message quite well.
Hurt's narration was not great, but still good. Toohey was Hurt's best character; Keating's dismantling was unforgettable: a chilling warning to the "secondhanders" of the world and cause for deep introspection, well worth the 30 hours to get there.
I could have done without the endless details of her characters. Fortunately that was offset by her wonderful scene and setting descriptions, the researched architectural details adding an educational edge to the story. (At the time I was reading this, my wife and I had just purchased a new house, making for a unique personal experience.)
My greatest takeaway though may have come in the first ten minutes, in Rand's introduction to the 25th anniversary of the book:
"Certain writers, of whom I am one, do not live, think or write on the range of the moment. Novels, in the proper sense of the word, are not written to vanish in a month or a year. That most of them do, today, that they are written and published as if they were magazines, to fade as rapidly, is one of the sorriest aspects of today's literature, and one of the clearest indictments of its dominant esthetic philosophy: concrete-bound, journalistic Naturalism which has now reached its dead end in the inarticulate sounds of panic."
I couldn't have put my own similar thoughts into words any better. Atlas Shrugged is on my wishlist.
This should be required reading for everyone along with Atlas Shrugged. Performance was great but story is unrivaled. Read it and tell others to read it.
Absolutely! Rand is brilliant when it comes to imparting her philosophical ideals and imparting them to the reader through her in depth character development.
I love the way that Rand forces the reader to develop opinions about her characters through the twists and turns in her story.
I didn't like the stories of Rape. Perhaps things have changed since this book was originally written but the idea of a women being attracted to this man because of this isn't really a good thing. Also Rand's selfish nature appears throughout, maybe more so in this than in Atlas; however, like Atlas she also makes some great points for those who believe in the importance of building something.
Honestly it's hard to say, Rand puts her hero's through some pretty tough paces so when they do win the feelings of exhaustion area apparent.
This book is a movie... it was okay.
Rand's brilliant social narrative written over 50 years ago has proved to be more clairvoyant than Orwell's 1984. Her parasitic, altruism obsessed second-handers are today's scarcely disguised progressives. Read it -- then weep for our country and what once made it special and strong. Though an atheist, she could well be described as a modern Jeremiah.