You are on page 1of 4

What Is Capitalism?

This is Ayn Rand’s flagship talk on capitalism. In this 1967 lecture, Miss Rand gives an in -depth explanation of what capitalism is, why it is often misunderstood, and why it is the only social system consonant with man’s nature. She discusses the philosophical and e thical roots of capitalism, and contrasts them with the moral-philosophic doctrines that sanction ruling men by force. She then discusses progress under capitalism and how it is fundamentally different from the so-called progress of a statist society. Along the way, Rand takes up questions such as:          What is man’s nature and how does capitalism recognize and protect it? What is the fundamental basis for the concept of individual rights? What types of social systems are consonant with man’s nature? Which ones go against it? Why is serving “the common good” not a sound principle for governing a free society? What are the different perspectives on “the good” and how do they inform people’s views on what constitutes a proper social system? What has been the ethical basis of all tyrannies in history? Who prospers on a free market? How does a free market unleash man’s creative abilities? What is so often misunderstood about progress under capitalism?

This talk is excerpted from an essay of the same name that is substantially longer and covers more issues. Students interested in mastering Ayn Rand’s views on capitalism are highly encouraged to study the full essay in addition to enjoying this course. The essay can be found here. _________________________________________ Course video available on your mobile devices and tablets. Note that user interactions are not accessible on mobile devices. So watching courses on your smart phone or tablet is possible – but you won’t get the full experience and some check marks will remain unchecked until completed on a personal computer. Log in to take this course    Course Outline Additional Readings Essay Contest

Note: Sections are delineated according to paragraph numbers in the transcript. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Man’s Nature (1–8) Individual Rights (9–11) What Is a Proper Social System? (12–17) Capitalism: What It Is (18–22) “The Common Good” (23–27) Three Theories of “The Good” (28–32) Rule by Force: Philosophical Roots (33–36)

and it explains why the right to property is inseparable from the right to life.org/classroom/16/#sthash.5BHf374R. “Collectivized Ethics” in The Virtue of Selfishness This is an important essay to read to understand Ayn Rand’s v iew of the corrupt nature of central planning. “The Moral Meaning of Capitalism” in For the New Intellectual In this excerpt from Atlas Shrugged. “From Each According to His Ability. This is crucial reading for understanding why Rand views ethics to be as objective as a physical science. it is crucial to understand her views on man’s rights. it is crucial to understand her views on the nature and purpose of government. 10. Students interested in mastering Ayn Rand’s views on capitalism are especially encouraged to study it closely. and resentment by trying to live according to this principle.8. “Man’s Rights” in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal To understand Ayn Rand’s views on capitalism.aynrand. This is the best essay to read on the topic. a heroic steel magnate defends his moral right to run his business on his own terms. “The Objectivist Ethics” in The Virtue of Selfishness Ayn Rand said that every theory of politics rests on a theory of ethics. and how central planning invariably treats individual men as disposable. This is the best essay to read on the topic. 11. “The Nature of Government” in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal To understand Ayn Rand’s views on capitalism. 9. an Ayn Rand hero argues why we should embrace a society ruled by money and decry the alternative. . a character describes how a once-thriving factory town drove itself into poverty. Capitalism and Objective Values (37–40) Objectivity of Free Market Values (41–47) Success on a Free Market (48–54) Progress Without Sacrifice (55–61) Need for a Proper Moral Base (62–70) . and it explains why the purpose of government should be limited to protecting individual rights. “The Money Speech” in For the New Intellectual In this excerpt from Atlas Shrugged. misery. 12.See more at: http://campus.dpuf Essays for Further Reading "What Is Capitalism?” in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal The essay version of this talk is substantially longer and covers many more issues. and this essay contains a detailed presentation of her ethics of rational egoism. in addition to enjoying this course. to Each According to His Need” in For the New Intellectual In this excerpt from Atlas Shrugged.

See more at: http://campus.org/classroom/16/#sthash. . she not only discusses the how rampant inflationary policy can devastate an economy. Here. she argues why today’s present economic system.5BHf374R. which she calls a mixed economy to denote the mixture of economic freedom and economic controls.“America’s Persecuted Minority: Big Business” in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal For those intrigued by Ayn Rand’s views on economic topics. and why she thought that conservatives were either uninterested in or hopeless at defending free market capitalism. she also discusses how anti-conceptual thinking and corrupt moral ideas give rise to inflationary policy.aynrand. In it. “Egalitarianism and Inflation” in Philosophy: Who Needs It This is another of Ayn Rand’s main essays on economic topics. articulate and logically organized. . this essay should also be of interest. “Conservatism: An Obituary” in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal This essay explains why Ayn Rand did not think of herself as a conservative. “The Pull Peddlers” in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal This is another crucial essay by Ayn Rand on economic topics. In it. Judges will look for writing that is clear. is highly unstable and inevitably breeds escalating corruption and pressure-group warfare.dpuf "What Is Capitalism?" Essay Contest Essay Prompt Why does Ayn Rand argue that the moral justification of capitalism does not lie in the claim that it is the best way to achieve the "common good"? Prizes    First Place$500 Second Place$250 Third Place  A set of nonfiction works by Ayn Rand including:  For the New Intellectual  Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal  The Virtue of Selfishness  The Romantic Manifesto  A $50 gift certificate to the Ayn Rand Institute eStore Contest Rules Essays will be judged on both style and content. Winning essays must demonstrate an outstanding grasp of the philosophic meaning of “What Is Capitalism?” Rules  No application is required. she argues that businessmen are unjustly vilified and regularly persecuted in American culture and law.

2014. state or local taxes. The Ayn Rand Institute has the right to provide contest deadline extensions when deemed appropriate. field or profession (grade level through grad school if you are a student).org Include in the body of your email your name. docx. To Enter Email your essay to campus@aynrand.5BHf374R.             Entrant must be a student on Ayn Rand Institute Campus who has completed the “What Is Capitalism?” course. Essay must be solely the work of the entrant. Winners and all other participants will be notified via e-mail by February 28. Essays must be submitted by email. Attach your essay to the email in one of the following formats: pdf. email address and phone number. Your submission must be sent to campus@aynrand. Winners will be solely responsible for any federal. its board of directors and their immediate family members are not eligible for this contest. One entry per person. . 2014. The winning first place essay may be posted in its entirety on any of these websites with full credit given to the author. 2014. Essay must be no fewer than 600 and no more than 800 words in length. no later than 11:59 PM. doc. rtf. Employees of the Ayn Rand Institute. Plagiarism will result in disqualification. Mailed in submissions will not be accepted. Essay must be submitted by January 19. txt. Contest winners agree to allow the Ayn Rand Institute to post their names on any of ARI’s affiliated websites.org no later than midnight pacific time January 19. Pacific Time. and double-spaced. Decisions of the judges are final.aynrand. All entries become the property of the Ayn Rand Institute and will not be returned. Remove any information from your essay that would reveal your identity.org/classroom/16/#sthash.dpuf . mailing address.See more at: http://campus.