By Gregory Salmieri
Ayn Rand identified "The role of the mind in man's existence" as the theme of Atlas Shrugged. In this talk, Dr. Salmieri discusses two essential aspects of this role as they are dramatized in the novel. First, the mind, or reason, is the faculty that makes possible the production of the material values we need to survive. Second, as the faculty by which we conceive and pursue the values that give meaning and direction to our lives, reason is the spirit or soul. Dr. Salmieri relates both aspects of reason's role to Ayn Rand's definition of reason as the faculty that "identifies and integrates the material provided by man's senses."
This talk was recorded at the 2009 Objectivist Summer Conference in Boston, MA.
(MP3 download; 87 min., with Q & A, 60 MB)