Atlas Shrugged

by: Ayn Rand

Hank Rearden

Rearden is the embodiment of productivity, just as Galt represents the mind. His legendary capacity for hard work and his integrity and skill have made him the most successful industrialist in the country. At first, Rearden struggles with important misconceptions about himself that undermine his ability to see his own greatness. He undergoes a profound transformation in the course of the novel. Despite operating his business based on a rational moral code that demands value for value, he allows his family to sponge off of him and make him feel guilty for his success. This makes him willing to sacrifice himself for their flawed morality and saps his vitality. He also mistakenly believes in a separation of the mind and body, which makes him see physical desire as base and low, and the things of the mind as unrelated to the physical world. Dagny and Francisco help him to reject this idea, which enables him to embrace his own value.


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