|Anthem by Ayn Rand front cover|
Author: Ayn Rand
Publisher: The Caxton Printers, Ltd.
Date Published: January 01, 1953
Edition: 9th printing, September 1982
Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopia, Classic, Philosophy
I bought this book from ThriftBooks.com, an online store selling used cheap books. It cost me $6.18 and this book is in Good condition. The cost may vary depending on the book's physical condition. If you think I got it cheap, you're wrong because I'm not living in the US. They offer free shipping in the US if your order is above $10 else you'll pay the shipping cost of around $5 per book.
More of my review, just continue scrolling below / click 'Read more'
|Anthem by Ayn Rand back cover|
|Anthem by Ayn Rand book spine|
|Anthem by Ayn Rand without dusk jacket|
|Anthem by Ayn Rand book edge and dusk jacket flap|
|Anthem by Ayn Rand Caxton 9th printing|
Since I don't read any synopsis or any introduction about this book, I find the story of Anthem odd. I find the first Chapter odd because the main characters are calling themselves Equality 7-2521 and they are using the personal pronoun 'we' instead of 'I' where I think something isn't right. I find the plurality in this novella mysterious and makes me want to finish the book in one seating because I want to find out why the oddity of their plurality. You can finish the book in one seating as it's only 105 pages.
The science & technology of the world where Equality 7-2521 lives in is way behind to what we have in our modern world. Set aside the age of this book but the story tells our modern world was left behind because mankind kind of reached a certain consequence which resulted to their demise. They called those times the Unmentionable Times. It's like the World is reset but not totally back to the stone age. People live accordingly to the work given to them by the Council. Everything is organized / regulated. It's like they're already fated to do specific jobs upon their birth. Like Equality 7-2521, their job is a Street Sweeper and they're only tasked to sweep the street and nothing else. Doing something else is a sin with corresponding punishment. They have been strip off from their individualism.
One must know what Collectivism and Individualism are, to fully understand the significance of the story. To brief you what Collectivism is, I'll just give you some examples (see below):
- the Government of North Korea is very centralized where people are required to abide the law of their state. They are a self-sustained country where people have their own respective roles in life like in farming, military, etc. (see more info. about the country of N. Korea here)
- nationalism is collectivism too; when our country is in the brink of war and emergency (Philippines), we have the Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) where trained & reserved candidates are obliged to help our countrymen to fight in War; sense of nationalism for the disputed islets, denouncing other countries for their forced claim to one of our territories. We are voicing it out as one, we act as one nation, collectively.
- you're not easily influenced with other's, ideology, opinions, fashion, etc.
- you are unique and distinguished
- you give importance to individual freedom
- you are a free man
- liberalism - ideas of liberty and equality
The two topics above are important for you to relate with the story. The story will give you the importance of being an individual. Anthem is pro Individualism and the antagonist is Collectivism. But it doesn't mean you need to hate the moral stance of Collectivism. If you've read the story, mankind ended up in a Collectivist world as the Unmentionable Times implies, something was mess up in the past. There might be a Nuclear War in the past? Holocaust? It's easy to guess what it could be if you are aware of what's happening in other countries, like terrorism & some territorial dispute which could ignite to another world war.
I highly recommend to all humans to read this book. Read books like Anthem. It may give us a moral stance, a new ideology or philosophy which we can use in our life.
My rating for this book is: 5.0 / 5.0
End of my review.
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- the story was written in 1937 and first published in England.
- Anthem is ranked 7th in 100 Best Novels (The Reader's List) by Modern Library
- the book was turned down by some publisher due to its philosophical stance
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Would you like to buy a similar edition of the book I reviewed? Buy it at Amazon.com (see direct link below):
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|Anthem 75th Anniv. Ed. (Paperback)|
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December 13, 2015
- Anthem by Ayn Rand, wiki - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthem_(novella)
- Collectivism, wiki - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collectivism
- Individualism, wiki - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Individualism
- Nationalism, wiki - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nationalism
- Liberalism, wiki - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberalism