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Ayn Rand's book "The Source": a summary, quotes and feedback from readers

In this article, we will touch on the work of Alisa Zinovievna Rosenbaum, who went on a visa in 1925 to study in the US and received citizenship here. The daughter of the pharmacist, having put a lot of effort, "made herself" on American soil, turning into a recognized literary classic and philosopher Ayn Rand.

"Source" is a novel written by her in 1943. At first, he was unfavorably criticized, but after a couple of years this work, becoming a bestseller, took a prominent place in the American literary classics. What prompted Ain Rand to write the novel? The idea of the value of human genius, the human ego for the whole of society, individualism opposed to greyness, a protest against the shooting in 1937 in far-away Russia of Lev Bekkerman, who was Alice's first love?

The protagonist and the heroine

The main character of Ayn Rand's novel "The Source" is the man of the creative profession, the architect Howard Roarke. This non-ordinary image reflects the writer's philosophical views, which can be briefly described as rational individualism. Our architect finds it ridiculous to consult with others, because a person must clearly imagine what he wants to achieve in life. In contrast to "team", "ant" collectivism, Roarke feels a deep personal need to create and change the world. He is charismatic, principled and consistent in defending his views on the need for a creative personality to have the necessary degree of freedom.

A difficult central female image is represented by the book "The Source". Ayn Rand portrays a young business woman Dominic Francon, who also does not change her "I". Before the acquisition of family happiness in a marriage with Howard Roarke, she twice married - for Peter Keating and Gale Winand.

The Middle Circle of Communication

A man incapable of choosing the path of the protagonist is his friend and fellow student Peter Keating. He, unfortunately, wants to follow only the external side of success, not having an internal core for this. On his example shows the history of most professionals with the broken fortunes of Ayn Rand. "Source" reveals the cause of his life defeat - the rejection of his "I" in favor of the interests of "the right people." The writer made a dramatic presentation of the cause of his crisis - a life disorientation, a substitute for a real desire to become a great desire to be considered such by other people.

Gail Vinand, the owner of the newspaper Znamya, is a more solid person. However, possessing the qualities of an organizer and leader, he gradually weakens, leveling his potential, following the opinion of representatives of influential sections of society. In the past, when building a career, he was an individualist. Recalling the beginning of his career, a cool editor joked that the obvious minus (then no one helped him) gave birth and plus (but no one interfered). However, at the end of the novel, losing his ego for the sake of the environment, Vinand also suffers a fiasco.

Ayn Rand portrays in the novel and open ideological opponent Howard, a critic and journalist Ellsworth Tuhi - a collectivist of his convictions, acting unscrupulous methods. This is a low and mean man.

Unfinished institution, unpromising workplace

Howard Roarke from his youth uncompromisingly goes his own way of life. Perceiving the architecture as a matter of all his life, he abandons the classical methods of designing buildings, coming into conflict with the teachers of the Stanton Institute of Technology. He prefers to be excluded, but to remain true to his ideals. A young idealist finds in New York a little-known but self-sufficient and creative architect Henry Cameron, whose work considers worthy and promising. However, this bureau soon becomes bankrupt. Howard changes several jobs in different companies. Not giving in to attempts of colleagues to influence his vision of architecture, he prefers to abandon her and get a job as a stonemason.

The personality of Peter Keating

The book "Source" shows another, a pragmatic beginning of the life path. Peter Keating, unlike him, goes the beaten path. He graduates from the institute and goes to work in the top architectural agency. A young careerist does not feel emotional discomfort, catering to clients. At the same time, his attitude to the art of architecture is formal. His spiritual strength he spends on achieving an external gloss in his work. Faced with the same problem, Peter knows that Howard Roark's advice will surely help him.

Beginning of Howard and Dominique

The theme of love is the highlight of many novels, and the book "The Source" by Ain Rand is no exception. The testimonies testify that the human relations in it are depicted in a masterly manner. Dominic, the daughter of Guy Francon, the owner of the career where Howard Roarke works, sympathizes with him. However, the communication of these two young people with a strong ego comes to a standstill, ending in gross sex. The girl did not even recognize the name of the extravagant stonemason.

Trap for the individualist

Roarke returns to New York for work in the specialty. Finally, his work is noticed. However, Ellsworth Touhi, led by the rejection of the personality of the protagonist, decides to destroy him with newspaper slander. His calculation is correct. First, the journalist provokes Roarke for non-standard architectural creativity. To do this, he persuades the client Hopton Stoddard to instruct Howard to build a temple of the human spirit. He creates a truly original project, and it provides a figure of a nude woman as an architectural element. (They met again in New York with Dominic, and she posed for sculpture.)

Ellsworth convinces Hopton of the incompetence of the performer, and he initiates the trial. "Traditional" architects who dislike the "white crow" of Roarke testify against him. Intercession at the trial of Dominic did not help. Howard was convicted. By the way, his former classmate Peter Keating also testified against the accused. Ellsworth triumphs.

Personal life Dominik

After the trial, Dominique Francon, trying to understand his feelings for Roarke, decides to end the relationship. She marries Peter Keating. She struggles to make a career in an architectural company. And it goes so far that a woman, with the consent of her husband, is given to the editor of the well-known newspaper Gaylu Vinanda. He falls in love with a young woman and, in turn, makes her an offer. Dominic, disappointed in St. Petersburg, agrees. The former husband receives an expensive order as compensation for moral costs.

However, despite the trial, customers are turning to Roarke. Fate is often ironic. By the will of the case, one of her hoaxes takes place. For the construction of his new family nest, the successful editor Vinand chooses by his own will the architect, whose buildings he always likes, namely Howard Roarke. They become friends. The businessman does not know that his wife and architect had previously had a relationship.

Peter uses Roarke

At this time, careerist Keating manages to get a task to develop a state-oriented and challenging project - the development of the Kortland area. Economy-class houses should subsequently become the standard for such construction in various regions. Peter turns to Roarke for help. He, being interested in such work as a professional, agrees anonymously and does it for free. Persuasion is simple: Keating must build a building that strictly corresponds to the developed project.

However Howard, returning from vacation, discovered that the arrangement was broken. His ego is offended. He in anger destroys the constructed building, blowing it up. At the same time, Dominic distracts the watchman. The newspaper Vinanda initially stands in support of Roarke, and then, under the pressure of the union - against.

Happy end

The denouement of the novel confirms the idea that a talented person is talented not only in his professional sphere. A brilliant speech of the accused in defense of himself convinces the judges of his innocence. Roark convincingly talks about the role of ego and individualism in this work. Dominic and Howard get married. Ain Rand's quotation is confirmed that only a person who loves himself can fully understand and love another.

The newspaper Vinanda is closed due to problems. The rich man asks Roarke to design a skyscraper for himself as a monument to the spiritual power that could have been his own, while the former editor admits that Howard possesses it.

The novel ends with the scene of the meeting of the Roarkovs and Gale Winand couples on the roof of the already constructed building.

The main idea of the novel

The only criterion for the value of the surrounding people, which Howard Roarke recognizes, is their personal independence. This cornerstone idea is presented to its readers by Ain Rand. "Source" is a book about human dignity, its primary meaning for any person. And the only criterion, litmus paper, determining whether a person really has it, is the degree of his independence.


A happy fate is the novel "The Source" by Ain Rand. Reviews about it are numerous, there is an impressive filmography, the circulation of the book exceeds 7 million copies. Is this accidental? To a large extent, the intellectual potential inherent in the novel is attractive to readers. The philosophy of objectivism is a red thread through the quotes of Ain Rand. "Source" is the novel that everyone should read. This will help to realize the obvious truth that individualism is indeed one of the engines of progress. After all, the ego is driven by scientists, people of creative professions, athletes, skilled craftsmen.

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