Were Ayn Rand’s psychological problems severe enough to be called insanity?

Ayn Rand produced one serviceable pulp novel (Atlas Shrugged) and several uninspired pieces of trashy fiction.

Was Ayn Rand verifiably insane?

Modern writers who research Rand suffer an understandable temptation to mock her, rather than to attempt to understand her.

http://michaelprescott.net/reversalism.htm

Mockery is too easy.

http://authormichaelprescott.blogspot.com/2005/03/was-ayn-rand-evil.html

Michael Prescott, a former admirer, writes in part:

Anyone judging by these books would have to say that Rand was narcissistic in the extreme. She lacked empathy. She could be intensely charming (charm and charisma are common features of sociopathy) but was also prone to outbursts of rage and frustration.

She exploited young, emotionally vulnerable people and frequently sabotaged their self-image with her vindictive cruelty. She claimed to love her husband but carried on an affair with a younger man right in front of him, a situation that drove her husband to alcoholism.

She was a hypochondriac. She showed signs of paranoia. She had an addictive personality, smoked two packs of cigarettes daily, and gobbled handfuls of diet pills (amphetamines).

She despised “average” people, whom she regarded as ugly and stupid and irrational, while viewing herself in exalted terms as the greatest writer in history and the greatest philosopher since Aristotle.

She was concerned with no one’s needs or wants or suffering except her own. She was able to claim in print that no one had ever helped her, when in fact she had benefited for years from the charity and goodwill of relatives and business associates and friends. She alienated nearly all her friends and allies by the end of her life, and died nearly alone.

She literally drove people crazy;….

This is hardly a person who should be seen as the epitome of rationality and benevolence – yet this is how her followers do see her.

I regard Ayn Rand as part of Cultural Marxism; if nothing else, her anti-Christian proselytizing served to weaken Christendom, and thus whether willingly or not, Ayn Rand advanced Cultural Marxism.

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