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Objectivism in the classroom.

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Tomorrow in an upper level philosophy course, we will begin a discussion on two articles about egoism. One is by a somewhat well known modern philosopher James Rachels. The other is by Objectivist philosophy professor Lester H. Hunt, current member of the Ayn Rand Society. It's rare you really get to talk engage people in a classroom directly with your ideas, and I find it rude and unproductive to simply inject conversations with your own positive ideas. If I raise my hand, it is normally to clarify something or to be a contrarian. Tomorrow I hope I can shed some light on the conversation. The paper by the Objectivist we are reading mentions, many times, Rand by name and her idea of flourishing egoism.

Since it is rare a discussion in any ethics course about egoism goes beyond Nietzsche, Plato and the Ring of Gyges, I figured I would post about about it and perhaps about the results, the ability of the professor to present the ideas and the reaction from students.

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One is by a somewhat well known modern philosopher James Rachels.

Just as a quick historical aside, Rachels wrote an introductory book on ethics with a brief section on Rand that was truly embarrassing. He utterly failed to grasp even the elementary nature of her argument for egoism. It didn't even rise to the level of caricature.

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The other is by Objectivist philosophy professor Lester H. Hunt, current member of the Ayn Rand Society.

Never heard of Lester H. Hunt or the Ayn Rand Society. ... google ...

Interesting I just went to there website http://www.aynrandsociety.org/

There are several prominent O'ists scholar members such as:

Allan Gotthelf

Robert Mayhew

Tara Smith

Darryl Wright

Sounds like a wonderful opportunity, congrats.

Edited by phibetakappa
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  • 2 months later...

Well I'm sure that class passed a long time ago lol. But I would like to know how it went. I've taken three ethics classes in University now and only one of them even mentioned egoism at all, and that was rather embarrassingly, the professor essentially just mentioned it as a silly alternative to altruism and mocked me in front of the class when I said that I was an advocate.. needless to say I spent the rest of the semester disproving many of his altruist arguments :) anyways its good to know that some schools have the balls to at least examine these ideas.

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