Archive for October, 2010

TUE Nov 2 – Explore Atlas Shrugged Session 10

WHEN:
TUESDAY, November 2, 2010 7:00 to 7:30 PM Arrival Time

TOPIC:
Explore Atlas Shrugged  Session 10
Podcasts and  discussion questions on Ayn Rand’s epic novel Atlas Shrugged
We will discuss the questions.

READINGS:
Atlas Shrugged, Part 2, Chapters 7-8
Part 2: Chapter 7: Moratorium on Brains
Part 2: Chapter 8: By Our Love
Or:
Pages 567-632 in the larger Hardcover or Softcover
Pages 531-591 in the smaller Mass Market Paperback

AUTHOR:
http://www.exploreaynrand.com/1957/
These discussion questions and podcast were prepared by Diana Hsieh for
ExploreAtlasShrugged.com for people interested in creating their own Atlas
Shrugged Reading Groups, as well as for anyone wishing to study the novel in
more depth. They may be freely used for the study and discussion of Atlas
Shrugged, provided that this paragraph remains intact in any reproduction.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:
The listed page numbers are for the larger edition, softcover or hardback.

Part 2: Chapter 7: Moratorium on Brains
Section 1 (567-571)
– Who is Clifton Locey?  What kind of person is he?  (568-9)
– What is happening at Taggart Transcontinental while Dagny is at the cabin?
What is Eddie Willers’ state of mind? (567-71)

Section 2 (571-584)
– What is Hank Rearden’s state of mind after signing the Gift Certificate?
What is his attitude toward Lillian and toward his work? (571-2)
– What is Rearden’s view of Ragnar Danneskjold?  Why does he feel conflicted
about him?  How does he express that in action?  (573-84)
– By what principles does Ragnar operate as a pirate?  What is his purpose?
Is he immoral?  Is he foolish?  What are the major effects of his piracy?
(575-81)

Section 3 (584-607)
– Step by step, how and why does the tunnel disaster happen? How does each
person’s thinking and actions contribute to it? Who could have stopped it?
Why didn’t they stop it? (584-607)
– What responsibility to the train passengers bear for the tunnel disaster?
How do their ideas lead to the crash?  Do they deserve to die?  (605-7)

Whole Chapter
– What is the significance of the title of this chapter?

Part 2: Chapter 8: By Our Love
Section 1 (608-622)
– What is Dagny’s state of mind at the cabin?  What orders does she give
herself? How and why does she struggle with them? (608-12)
– In her conversation with Francisco, what does Dagny think are her basic
alternatives?  What has she yet to learn?  What are the basic points that
Francisco attempts to explain to Dagny?  (618-20)
– How does Dagny react to the news of the tunnel disaster?  Why does that
event drive her to return to the world?  (620-2)

Section 2 (622-632)
– What is Jim Taggart’s response to the tunnel disaster?  What does that say
about his character and state of mind?  (622-7)
– How and why does Eddie Willers stand up to Jim in refusing to tell him where
Dagny is?  Why is he so distraught when Dagny returns?  (624-6)
– What does Dagny say to Hank about her return?  What does she mean?  (631-2)

Whole Chapter
– What is the significance of the title of this chapter?

WHERE:
Jackie & Lyman Hazelton’s Home
480-921-1156
Use http://www.mapquest.com/ to get directions from your location.

QUESTIONS:
Jackie Hazelton
(c) 480-516-3281 (h) 480-921-1156
(e) AZObjectivists_at_cox_dot_net

RSVP:
Reply to this message to AZObjectivists_at_cox_dot_net or
Call Jackie Hazelton at 480-921-1156

BRING:
Snacks or beverage to share or a monetary donation.

SAT Oct 16 – Brain Structure and the Objectivist Model of Consciousness

It is a rare event for us to have a guest speaker from out of town.
Please attend if you are interested to support the group.  If attendance
is poor, we will be less likely to have out of town speakers in the future.
If you plan to attend but have not yet let us know, please do so by
replying to this email.  Thanks, Jackie

WHEN:
SATURDAY, October 16, 2010 7:00 to 7:30 PM Arrival Time

TOPIC:
Brain Structure and the Objectivist Model of Consciousness
Guest Speaker Fred Stitt

ABSTRACT:
Ayn Rand and Nathaniel Branden presented a useful model of human
consciousness at the NBI lecture series in New York.  They named three
components  of consciousness: Sensates, percepts, and concepts.

They described the input and some degree of processing of raw data from the
outside world as the sensate level of consciousness.  Sensates were
integrated by remembered similarities into percepts, and percepts were
identified, integrated and named as abstract concepts.  This conceptual level
of consciousness is the uniquely human mental state that defines our
existence as thinking beings–the core issue of Objectivist epistemology.

Brain science has identified specific components of the brain that handle
these broad divisions of mental functioning.  In the process, researchers
have identified the means we use to turn our cognitive consciousness off or
on.  (Some of this research is quite recent, over the past five years of
less.)

Ultimately, acquired skills of “voluntary consciousness” could be the key to a
transformation of human abilities to learn, solve problems, and take the
initiative in advancing the next stage of human evolution.

BIO:
Fred Stitt, architect, author and Director of the San Francisco Institute for
Architecture, is a lifelong Objectivist and Libertarian.  Fred is organizing
the Free Minds Institute which will be an international on-line school
devoted to higher education for pro-reason, pro-freedom activists.

WHERE:
Jackie & Lyman Hazelton’s Home
480-921-1156
Use http://www.mapquest.com/ to get directions from your location.

QUESTIONS:
Jackie Hazelton
(c) 480-516-3281 (h) 480-921-1156
(e) AZObjectivists_at_cox_dot_net

RSVP:
Reply to this message to AZObjectivists_at_cox_dot_net or
Call Jackie Hazelton at 480-921-1156

BRING:
Snacks or beverage to share or a monetary donation.