Anthem Essay Contest

For students in grades 8, 9 and 10

Deadline: May 1, 2018

Cash Awards

1 First Prize: US$2,000
5 Second Prizes: US$500
10 Third Prizes: US$200
45 Finalists: US$50
175 Semifinalists: US$30

Topics

Select ONE of the following three topics:

1

Anthem depicts a world of the future, a collectivist dictatorship in which even the word “I” has vanished. Discuss the hero’s struggle to free himself from collectivism. What makes his victory possible? In your essay, consider what Ayn Rand has to say in “The Soul Of An Individualist” excerpt from her novel The Fountainhead.

2

In Anthem, the City has numerous rules and controls. Why do these exist? What is their purpose? Do you think the society that Equality envisions creating at the end of the story would include any of these rules and controls? Explain why or why not.

3

Contrast Equality’s view of morality at the end of the novel to the morality exemplified by his society’s institutions, practices and officials. In your essay, consider what Ayn Rand has to say in these excerpts from her writings.

Judging

Essays will be judged on whether the student is able to argue for and justify their view—not on whether the Institute agrees with the view the student expresses. Judges will look for writing that is clear, articulate and logically organized. Winning essays must demonstrate an outstanding grasp of the philosophic meaning of Anthem.

Essay submissions are evaluated in a fair and unbiased four-round judging process. Judges are individually selected by the Ayn Rand Institute Canada based on a demonstrated knowledge and understanding of Ayn Rand’s works.

To ensure the anonymity of our participants, essay cover sheets are removed after the first round. Winners’ names are unknown to judges until after essays have been ranked and the contest results finalized.

The Ayn Rand Institute Canada checks essays with Ithenticate plagiarism detection software.

Rules

  • No application is required. Contest is open to students worldwide, except where void or prohibited by law. Essays must be written in English only.
  • Entrant must be in the 8th, 9th or 10th grade. Verification of school enrollment will be required for all winning entrants.
  • To avoid disqualification, mailed-in essays must include a stapled cover sheet with the following information:
  1. your name and address;
  2. your email address (if available);
  3. the name and address of your school;
  4. topic selected (#1, 2 or 3 from the “Topics” tab);
  5. your current grade level; and
  6. (optional) the name of the teacher who assigned the essay if you are completing it for classroom credit.
  • Essay must be no fewer than 600 and no more than 1,200 words in length, double-spaced. Spelling errors and/or written corrections (by anyone) found on the essay will count against the final grade and should be omitted before submission.
  • One entry per student.
  • Essay must be submitted online or postmarked by May 1, 2018, no later than 11:59 PM, Pacific standard time.
  • The Ayn Rand Institute has the right to provide contest deadline extensions when deemed appropriate.
  • Essay must be solely the work of the entrant. Plagiarism will result in disqualification. Essays must not infringe on any third-party rights or intellectual property of any person, company or organization. By submitting an essay to this Contest, the entrant agrees to indemnify the Ayn Rand Institute for any claim, demand, judgment or other allegation arising from possible violation of someone’s trademark, copyright or other legally protected interest in any way in the entrant’s essay.
  • Decisions of the judges are final.
  • Employees of the Ayn Rand Institute, its board of directors and their immediate family members are not eligible for this contest. Past first-place winners are not eligible for this contest.
  • All entries become the property of the Ayn Rand Institute and will not be returned.
  • Winners, finalists, semifinalists and all other participants will be notified via email and/or by mail by August 29, 2018.
  • Winners are responsible for providing their mailing addresses and other necessary information under the law in order to receive any prizes. Contest winners agree to allow the Ayn Rand Institute to post their names on any of ARI’s affiliated websites. The first-place essay may be posted in its entirety on any of these websites with full credit given to the author.
  • Winners will be solely responsible for any federal, state or local taxes.

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To Enter

Submit online

You will receive an e-mail acknowledging receipt of your entry within 24 hours. If it has been at least 24 hours, and you have not received e-mail notification, please e-mail eduprograms@aynrandinstitute.ca. Please check your junk e-mail for your notification. Please do not re-submit.

Students unable to submit their essays online may mail essays to:

Anthem Essay Contest
The Ayn Rand Institute Canada
6540 E. Hastings Street, Suite 812
Burnaby, BC V5B 4Z5
CANADA

For mailed-in essays only—You MUST include a stapled cover sheet with the following information: your name; mailing address; e-mail address; the name and address of your school; topic selected (#1, 2 or 3 from the list above); your current grade level; the name of the teacher who assigned the essay (if applicable).

Please do not submit duplicate essays!

If you wish to verify our receipt of your essay, please paperclip a stamped, self-addressed postcard to the essay.

Comments or questions about the essay contests are welcome. Please write to eduprograms@aynrandinstitute.ca.

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