Transcending Objectivism and Kantianism

As can be seen with an old popular thread I started on Objectivism online forum, I am very interested in putting side-to-side various philosophies, even before I learn that some of them cannot be thoroughly compared! So I would like to find out whether it is even possible to conceive of transcending Rand’s worldview with that of her well-known ‘archenemy’ – Immanuel Kant himself. I’ve spent the last two years trying to figure out this big conflict in contemporary philosophy by studying Kant’s philosophy and debating Kantians, especially on Philosophy forums, which are now, unfortunately, non-operational. So what are some ideas that I’d like to put forward to initiate this discussion? Continue reading

The Critique of Rand’s Philosophy

Ayn Rand has been criticized as “anti-scientific” and not truly Aristotelian (O’Neill, 1977:12, 85, 126f.) and “anti-religious,” although she borrowed a “flavor” of religion by replacing the term “God” with her reality as “the authoritative absolute” and termed “man” as “the object of worship” (Ryan, 2003:329f.). A rhetorical strategy that she sometimes used in an argument was that she “attaches a ‘rider’ to a position, rejects or refutes the ‘rider,’ and seems to think she has thereby rejected or refuted the position itself” (ibid., 37). This way, Rand can impose her own meaning and misrepresent ideas of others without exposing the flaws or inadequacies of her own philosophy. She also had “an undeniable ability to portray her foils vividly and to make the reader loathe them as much as she did” (346). Continue reading