Great Libertarian Fiction

Discussion in 'Politics & Religion' started by Rearden Metal, Apr 30, 2010.

  1. Ok, I admit Atlas Shrugged and Fountainhead are flawed works. As fond as I am of these books, they can only 'convince' people who are already Libertarian-minded to begin with. These books are designed to be hated by pretty much everyone else. The fact that you have to plod through the first 300 pages of A.S. to even begin to have a chance of getting into the story doesn't help much either.

    A book with a far stronger chance of changing minds is "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress". The story doesn't drag, and even the A.I. computer is a more 'human' character than those created by Rand. I'd recommend this book to pretty much everybody. You won't be disappointed, I promise.

    So, anyone have other notable Libertarian minded fiction books to recommend?
  2. I'm curious. Why would you be interested in "Libertarian fiction?" If you are of libertarian bent, that's okay. But why the need to belabor the point? I would imagine that political novels are fairly bland unless they are in the extreme. Speaking of which, as you may know, I read both of Rand's books that you mentioned from cover to cover, and I didn't like them. They were two-dimensional and extreme. The protagonists were pure and the antagonists were scum. Cardboard cutouts all.

    Here is my take on Rand. Imagine being told that the body needs a certain minimum amount of sodium to function properly. Then imagine generously adding salt to every meal. If a little is good, then more must be better, right? Further, why have a limit? And so, an extremist is born.

    Seriously, "Libertarian fiction?" That's a bit much. Do you really think political pontification makes for good fiction? I'm reminded of something I read in Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance:

    "...His lack of faith in [...] was why he was so fanatically dedicated to it.

    You are never dedicated to something you have complete confidence in. No one is fanatically shouting that the sun is going to rise tomorrow. They know it's going to rise tomorrow. When people are fanatically dedicated to political or religious faiths or any other kinds of dogmas or goals, it's always because these dogmas or goals are in doubt.

    The militancy of the Jesuits he somewhat resembled is a case in point. Historically, their zeal stems not from the strength of the Catholic Church but from its weakness in the face of Reformation..."

    Something to think about. I mean no disrespect. I just thought I'd make the observation.

    As an aside, I'm a Liberal in most matters, but I cannot even imagine seeking out "Liberal fiction." Maybe that's just me.
  3. When it comes to entertainment like books and movies, mindless entertainment is ok, but fiction with a message that makes me want to stand up and cheer from an ideological perspective is always preferable above something with no real message at all.
  4. Fair enough. I guess I just can't personally imagine cheering for general political ideology in fiction. Good and evil, certainly. Right and wrong, of course. But Left or Right? Wouldn't a focus on ideology suggest an absence of narrative? I just can't help but imagine that such fiction would be preachy, somewhat dogmatic and far from literature. (Rand comes to mind. :D ). Besides, I think genuinely good fiction carries its own message, otherwise it wouldn't really be good fiction. Good fiction, by definition, connects and gives one pause. But hey, we all have our own tastes. I'm curious to see what titles other respondents will suggest.
  5. PatternRec

    PatternRec Guest

    Reading Atlas Shrugged was painful indeed.

    So I'm going to look into what you suggested.
  6. Fiction is over rated.
  7. Mav88


    The problem with any idealogy is just what its name implies, it's ideal, not real.

    I am libertarian bent, but the idealogues treat liberty as an absolute. Absolutes are meaningless in nature, even more so among human invented social-political laws.

    Fiction is about the only place where idealogy makes perfect sense.