Anthem

2009-11-17

One of my favorite novels has long been Anthem by Ayn Rand; indeed it was the first public-domain text that I posted at the Monadnock Press website. Unfortunately, the Project Gutenberg etexts of Anthem contain numerous errors, only some of which are corrected in other online versions such as that by Richard Lawrence. Recently I took it upon myself to produce an accurate text of the novel, which it turns out is much more difficult than you might expect because two major editions were published during Rand's lifetime (the original 1938 British edition and the heavily-revised 1946 American edition), true first printings of the 1946 edition are difficult to come by (I have yet to inspect one), later paperback versions printed in America contain further differences from the 1946 edition, and even the (assumed) 1946 text differs from the marked-up 1938 edition that Rand seems to have submitted to the typesetters. It's a mess!

Although my research continues, I think I'm now getting close to a definitive version of the novel. To see the fruits of my labors, visit the online version (including extensive textual notes). I shall post again once I have a version that I think is truly definitive. Oh, and if you happen to own a first printing of the 1946 American edition by Pamphleteers Inc., please let me know (I might ask you to check a few passages for me).

Enjoy!

UPDATE 2009-11-22: I've just ordered a copy of the second printing (1947) by Pamphleteers of the first American edition (1946), which I hope is the same as the first printing (except for the price -- the first printing is really expensive!). Further updates on the way...

UPDATE 2009-11-29: I have completed a thorough review of all the texts available to me, including a second printing of the first American edition. Until I can inspect the galley proofs housed at the Library of Congress, I shall not make further edits to the text published at the Monadnock Press, despite the fact that I have discovered some differences between the edits that Rand marked on her copy of the 1938 British edition and the 1946 American edition as published by Pamphleteers, Inc.

UPDATE 2012-04-03: I have posted about the conclusions of my research.


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