Imitating the 'Rape' Scene in The Fountainhead
Webcast Q&A: 29 May 2011, Question 4
I answered a question on imitating the 'rape' scene in The Fountainhead on 29 May 2011. You can listen to or download the podcast of just this question below – or check out the whole episode of Philosophy in Action Radio.
Should a man ever act in real life as Howard Roark did in his first sexual encounter with Dominique? In your 24 April 2011 webcast, you said that a person should not act as Howard Roark did in the "rape" scene in The Fountainhead, implying it would be immoral. Could you explain why? Is the problem that you cannot know for certain what the woman wants? I've slept with a few women and only once have I ever been 100% certain that she wanted it that way and so I took it without any real permission and I was right. She even told me later she wouldn't have wanted it any other way. I understand it is very dangerous to say to guys, "Hey, its okay to do this!" because most people are idiots, but wouldn't there be rare real-life cases in which a man would be right to act like Roark did?
My Answer, In Brief: The "rape" scene is wonderful drama, but to do the same in real life would risk actually raping the woman – which is not merely horrible in and of itself, but also likely to result in years of imprisonment.
- Duration: 7:10
- Download: MP3 Segment (2.5 MB)
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- "Understanding the 'Rape' Scene in The Fountainhead" by Andy Berstein in Essays on Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead
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I'm Dr. Diana Brickell. I'm a philosopher specializing in the application of rational principles to the challenges of real life. I received my Ph.D in philosophy from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2009. My book, Responsibility & Luck: A Defense of Praise and Blame, is available for purchase in paperback and Kindle. The book defends the justice of moral praise and blame of persons using an Aristotelian theory of moral responsibility, thereby refuting Thomas Nagel's "problem of moral luck."
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