Mar 302007

This NYU event — “50th Anniversary of Atlas Shrugged Celebration Day” — looks promising! (Note the revised schedule from my posting this morning: Dr. Milgram will be speaking before Dr. Bernstein.)

The 50th Anniversary of Atlas Shrugged Celebration Day in New York City

Who: Dr. Andrew Bernstein, Dr. Shoshana Milgram, Dr. Harry Binswanger, Dr. Allan Gotthelf… and you!

What: A day-long celebratory event in honor of the 50th anniversary of the publication of Atlas Shrugged.

When: Saturday April 7th 2007, ALL DAY

Where: Kimmel Center, Room Shorin Auditorium (8th Floor), New York University, 60 Washington Square South, New York, NY 10012. Also, the Empire State Building (!)

Registration: Non-NYU guests must register by e-mailing [email protected].

Admission: The club is asking for a suggested donation of $20 from non-students in order to cover our expenses. (Also, please note that all meals and the Empire State building tour are to be paid on your own.)


9am – 10:30am: Dr. Milgram, “Writing and Re-Writing Atlas Shrugged: Ayn Rand’s Mind at Work”

10:30am – 11:30am: Snack Break (provided by the Club) and The Atlas Shrugged Trivia Game

11:30am – 1pm: Dr. Bernstein, “Atlas Shrugged as the Culmination of the Romantic Novel”

1pm – 2pm: Lunch Break (on your own)

2pm – 3pm: Open Mic: come up and share your favorite passage from the novel and/or your reason for wanting to come celebrate Atlas Shrugged.

3pm – 5pm: Drs. Binswanger and Gotthelf, “General Q&A on Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand, and Objectivism”

5:30pm: Dinner and Drinks at the Heartland Brewery, Ground Floor, The Empire State Building

9pm: Trip up to the Observation Decks of The Empire State Building


Dr. Milgram’s lecture, Writing and Re-Writing Atlas Shrugged: Ayn Rand’s Mind at Work: “In this lecture, as we celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of Atlas Shrugged, we will go back in time to the years before the novel became fixed and final. Ayn Rand’s manuscripts demonstrate — in the words of Richard Halley, a character in her novel — “what discipline, what effort, what tension of mind, what unrelenting strain upon one’s power of clarify are needed to produce a work of art.” After a survey of her philosophical and literary preparations, we will examine, selectively, her small-scale and large-scale editing, with special emphasis on sequences of romantic relationships and philosophical discourse.”

Dr. Bernstein’s lecture, Atlas Shrugged as the Culmination of the Romantic Novel: “Romanticism champions free will, holding that men can transform their lives by choosing proper principles and values. This is certainly true of the three greatest Romantic novelists: Hugo, Dostoyevsky, and Ayn Rand. Each — in Les Miserables, The Brothers Karamazov, and Atlas Shrugged, respectively — seeks to dramatize the world-changing potential of his particular philosophy. But only Ayn Rand presents a triumphant vision. In the other novels, the good, by the author’s own standards, is not embraced. The power to choose the right ideas thus seems illusory in the very works of the advocates of volition. What, then, are the deeper premises held by Ayn Rand, but not by the others, enabling her to fully project man’s capacity to shape his own soul?”

Dr. Binswanger and Dr. Gotthelf were both friends and associates of Miss Rand and are recognized leading experts on her philosophy. Dr. Binswanger has been professor of philosophy at the Objectivist Academic Center of the Ayn Rand Institute since 1994 and is currently writing a book on the causal nature of consciousness. Dr. Gotthelf is a visiting professor at the University of Pittsburgh where he holds a fellowship for the study of Objectivism, and he is also an authority on the philosophy of Aristotle.

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