Just For Fun: My Top Ten Villains!

  While, at least in theory, we cheer for the victory of the heroes, it is often the villains that define a work, and certainly the villains tend to get the best lines, best music, and commonly the coolest "style" in a work.   This probably partly stems from the fact that villains are more "free" than the heroes; they get to do what they want rather than what they should or must. In addition, the villains tend to be in control, the ACTIVE force, in the story, at least up until the end; the heroes spend much of their time reacting [ Continue reading... ]

Under the Influence: Ayn Rand and _Atlas Shrugged_

    "I swear – by my life and my love of it – that I shall never live my life for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live his life for mine."        Undoubtedly one of the most controversial, hated, and loved figures of the 20th century, Ayn Rand dedicated her work  to promotion of individual rights and rationality over group rights and emotion. The particular way in which she approached this conflict was, itself, a deeply personal and emotional one: her family had suffered considerably during the conversion of [ Continue reading... ]