An Egoist Identity Analysis

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Prompt #3: An Egoist Identity “To say ‘I love you’ one must first be able to say the ‘I’” (Ayn Rand). This philosophy represents an exemplary case in which an egoist can be viewed as more than just a self-centered person. In both Anthem and “The Soul of an Individualist”, Rand depicts the same distinct image through her characters, Prometheus and Howard Roark. Prometheus’s ideals and identification as an egoist give the term a positive connotation that contradicts all immoral aspects attributed to it. By definition, the word ‘ego’ describes how high someone’s sense of self-esteem is without suggesting any negativity. Regardless, many would still argue the opposite due to lack of knowledge or misunderstanding. Although an egoist is viewed…show more content…
He starts off by being an insignificant part of a collectivist society, but later develops into a distinguished individual who is willing to fight for his and his friends’ rights; yet, Prometheus is still strongly devoted to egoism. In Prometheus’s eyes, the word ‘egoist’ is only a way to describe his experience while understanding love without the influence of his collective community. Discovering something of such importance, alone, marks a significant emotional point in the book and in the character’s fictional life. The protagonist shows his devotion to these beliefs by giving an example of confidence and bravery which today would be praised if not encouraged: “I am not a tool for their use. I am not a servant of their needs. I am not a bandage for their wounds. I am not a sacrifice on their altars” (95). As Howard Roark mentions in his speech, individuals need other individuals in order to earn recognition for their visions. Because of the brainwashed humans in his previous society and the abrupt transition into a new one, Prometheus only saw an extreme or the other: collectivism or individualism. However, by the end, the hero becomes a true individual, unveiling the secret to having eternal happiness and voicing his plans for the future: “I shall call to me all the men and the women whose spirit has not been killed within them and who suffer under the yoke of their brothers” (101). Although he
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