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Author Topic: Uglies related to Ayn Rand's Anthem?  (Read 4361 times)

TediousExpectations

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Uglies related to Ayn Rand's Anthem?
« on: January 22, 2010, 01:56:04 PM »

I'm just now doing an essay for English class about Uglies, and I'm connecting it to Ayn Rand's book Anthem. It just made me realize how similar Scott Westerfeld's story is to Ayn Rand's. Do you think he was inspired by Anthem when writing Uglies?
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Pedestrian

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Re: Uglies related to Ayn Rand's Anthem?
« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2010, 02:29:08 PM »

No, I don't really think so. While there are similarities, I think it's mostly because Anthem and Uglies are just two examples of a large genre of dystopian fiction, a genre which consists of a lot of similar ideas in different books. I think Westerfeld was more inspired by stuff like Brave New World; and I don't really think of Uglies as similar to Anthem at all. Anthem is about a future that has technologically regressed and relies on the collective mind--Uglies is definitely about a society that is technologically advanced. Ayn Rand uses Anthem to portray her philosophy of objectivism, which from reading Uglies, I don't think Westerfeld would agree with entirely. It's true that both authors want to encourage individualism, but Westerfeld doesn't have any ideas as strong as Rand's "ego". Uglies isn't about defying collectivism, it's about defying the expectations of a controlling society in general.
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TediousExpectations

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Re: Uglies related to Ayn Rand's Anthem?
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2010, 03:47:15 PM »

I agree with you that the part about technology is not nearly the same, and I don't really believe that Westerfeld would entirely agree with Ayn Rand's objectivism philosophy either. But I do see the books as extremely similar, whether he was inspired by Anthem, or it is purely just that his thoughts are on the same wave link as hers were. I believe the overall themes of the books are the same, such as fighting for your freedom, and society's fear of change, ideas, and knowledge. Also the human need to know and discover more. In both books they are in extremely oppressive societies, and characters in both fight to free themselves from it. And obviously, both books are about being an individual, and having your own thoughts and opinions.
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Pedestrian

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Re: Uglies related to Ayn Rand's Anthem?
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2010, 05:36:51 AM »

But those are common themes in dystopian fiction--where characters are placed in any kind of futuristic, oppressive society. It's not just Uglies and Anthem--there's Brave New World, 1984, Player Piano, We, Fahrenheit 451, The Giver, Truesight, Feed. They are similar, but they aren't just similarities between two books, they're similarities among a lot books of the same genre.

But. I mean. You're right. xD You're absolutely right. I'm just saying I don't think of the books as directly connected to each other because there's so many books like that.
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JimmyLost

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Re: Uglies related to Ayn Rand's Anthem?
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2010, 05:38:13 AM »

I haven't read Anthem just throughing this out there, you can connect almost anything to anything.
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cass.anne16

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Re: Uglies related to Ayn Rand's Anthem?
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2012, 04:12:20 PM »

While I agree that there are simliarities between a lot of books in this genre.. I was reminded of "Uglies" when reading Ayn Rand's books years later.

I feel like it's not related to the plot or characters, but more connected in its message. There's something about the spirit of both books that sort of allowed me to open my eyes and look at the world in a different way.  For me, the connection between the two books happened because of the substantial effects they had on the way I viewed society.
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