by Ayn Rand
Atlas Shrugged Language and Communication Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Volume.Chapter.Section.Page). We used the 50th Anniversary Edition published by Signet Books in 2007.
James Taggart saw Lillian Rearden drift casually toward him at the one moment when he chanced to be alone in the dim corner between a potted palm and a window. He stopped and waited to let her approach. He could not guess her purpose, but this was the manner which, in the code he understood, meant that he had better hear her. (18.104.22.168)
James and Lillian use a sort of unspoken language here to start up a conversation, which itself will use a sort of code. It's fascinating how complex the looters' forms of communication are. They spend so much time and energy coming up with ways to avoid certain truths when it would take less effort to just speak up and face reality.
"There was a time when men were afraid that somebody would reveal some secret of theirs that was unknown to their fellows. Nowadays, they're afraid that somebody will name what everybody knows." (22.214.171.124)
This observation by Francisco really sums up the state of the looters' regime. The looters are ignoring an elephant in the room and have, illogically, turned obvious truths into secrets.
"So they'll bless and follow anyone who gives them a justification for not thinking. Anyone who makes a virtue – a highly intellectual virtue – out of what they know to be their sin, their weakness, and their guilt."
"And you propose to pander this to them?"
"That is the road to popularity." (126.96.36.199-8)
Ferris uses language as a way to control people, putting into practice Stadler's ideas about manipulating an ignorant society.