Capitalism, the Unknown Ideal Chapter Abstracts for Teachers

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Chapter Abstracts

What is Capitalism?

• Rand begins the book with a discussion of the disintegration of philosophy, which she blames for a renewal of a period of primitive mysticism.

• Rand then discusses the various concepts of man, and how man is part of, or independent of, society.

• In one way, man is presented as a tribal being. This means that man is not considered a free and independent entity, but rather part of the tribe and an expendable part of the tribe. This has been true throughout feudalism.

• Rand believes that the concept of man underwent a change when capitalism and the concept of private property came into existence.

• When man is viewed as a slave of the people, in a tribal sense, rather than a slave of the king, in the feudal sense, society changes. Instead of having galley slaves, there are steamboat owners.

• Capitalism comes into being, according...

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