Ayn Rand’s Ideal Man

Discusses the characteristics and flaws of Ayn Rand’s `ideal man`, based on the character of Howard Roark from `The Fountainhead`.

Starts out with a contrast of society’s ideal man and Rand’s man. Explains the influence of her upbringing and Communist Russia on her desired attributes of said man. Details obsession with portraying this man in all her writings. Discusses traits of creator: originator, `black or white` mentality, perfectionist, egoist, selfishness, individualist, atheist, requirement of suffering. Also touches on whether a woman can be an ideal `man`, according to Rand’s definition, and discusses, briefly, the rape scene.
If one does a search for ideal man on any web-based search engine, the majority of the webpage links returned describe physical qualities or list one of a number of celebrities. A recent survey to compile the most important characteristics returned the following attributes: The ideal man is taller; athletic/toned build; hairless face and chest; medium butt and lips; blue eyes; short brown straight hair; with piercings – but depends where; and without tattoos (Purple Tights). Now add just a single word to that search, ?Rand,? and the result changes dramatically. The web pages that are returned are primarily focused on the mental, emotional, and even spiritual aspects of a person. Ayn Rand was obsessed with the ideal man. In her book The Fountainhead, the protagonist, Howard Roark, is Rand’s vision of this ideal man. While Rand makes good arguments for her view of the idyllic man, there are several characteristics that alienate him from the rest of humanity and make his existence unrealistic, and more likely impossible. She has created an archetype, a superhero of sorts. And every superhero has at least one weakness. Though Rand may not classify them as weaknesses, they definitely affect his ability to interact with the society in which he lives.