Posted by: Jodi | October 24, 2010

Quickly Quotable #30 – Ayn Rand

“Achievement of your happiness is the only moral purpose of your life, and that happiness, not pain or mindless self-indulgence, is the proof of your moral integrity, since it is the proof and the result of your loyalty to the achievement of your values. ”

“Achieving life is not the equivalent of avoiding death. ”

“Love is the expression of one’s values, the greatest reward you can earn for the moral qualities you have achieved in your character and person, the emotional price paid by one man for the joy he receives from the virtues of another. ”

“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.”

“To achieve, you need thought. You have to know what you are doing and that’s real power.”

Ayn Rand

  • Born: 2 February 1905
  • Birthplace: St. Petersburg, Russia
  • Died: 6 March 1982
  • Best Known As: Author of The Fountainhead and leader of Objectivism movement

Name at birth: Alissa Zinovievna Rosenbaum

Born and educated in Russia, Ayn Rand moved to the United States in 1926, moving to Hollywood to begin a career as a screenwriter. In 1932 she sold her first screenplay, but soon turned to writing novels. Her novel The Fountainhead was published in 1943 and eventually became a bestseller. Still occasionally working as a screenwriter, Rand moved to New York City in 1951 and published Atlas Shrugged in 1957. Her novels espoused what came to be called Objectivism, a philosophy that champions capitalism and the preeminence of the individual.

Quotes courtesy of

Biography courtesy of



  1. I read and enjoyed The Fountainhead. But I’m working up the necessary courage to tackle Atlas Shrugged.

    • I’m in the same boat – I found the Fountainhead fascinating but it was hard to read. It’s been a few years, perhaps I’m ready to try Atlas Shrugged.

  2. One of the 20th century’s great thinkers. A neo-enlightment philosopher perhaps.

    We could use more enlightenment these days.

    • I’ll raise my glass to that!

  3. I believe I’ve read all of Rand’s books, including the short, enigmatic, semi-scifi volume called Anthem. My favorite is Atlas Shrugged. I’ve read that one four or five times.

    Rand’s philosophies, perhaps labeled as “enlightened self-interest” are quite compelling, and she constantly makes a case for them in all of her books.

    Good choice for quotes, Jodi! Nicely done!

    • I read Anthem as a warm up to Fountainhead and really liked it. I wish she would have done a few more like it. Then again, if you’ve said all you needed to say, why make another?

  4. She was a tremendous influence on me in my late teens.

    • I can imagine! All teens who are learning more about who they are and what their purpose is would benefit from the lesson that they are in charge of their own happiness (not their friends or circumstances).

  5. One of my favorite quotes:

    “The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.”

    • Me too!

  6. my favorite is from the FOUNTAIN HEAD, when tooey asks rourke, “what do you think of me?”
    His answer was, “I don’t think of you”. a great way to stay focused.

    • I remember that part, a profound statement.


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