The Atlas Project / LESSON 13
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Part II, Chapter 3: White Blackmail

Greg Salmieri and Ben Bayer discuss the following questions for Part II, Chapter 3, of Atlas Shrugged: “White Blackmail.” 

  • Question 1: In what ways do we see the influence of Francisco on Rearden’s thoughts and actions?
  • Question 2: How is Lillian’s scheme for punishing Rearden similar to Floyd Ferris’s attempt to blackmail Rearden? How does Rearden react to each incident?
  • Question 3: Rearden thinks of himself as traveling down a path of discovery. What new steps does he take down this path in this chapter? What prompted the steps and what actions do they lead him to?
  • Question 4: How does Dagny’s understanding of the phenomenon of vanishing producers develop in this chapter? What clues are there that might help us understand this phenomenon?
  • Question 5: What can we tell from this chapter about why Francisco comes to Rearden's office and about whether he accomplishes his goal?
  • Question 6: What other questions or observations do you have about Part II, Chapter 3?

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Lesson Outline

Lead Instructor

Gregory Salmieri
Gregory Salmieri

Gregory Salmieri is an Anthem Foundation Fellow in philosophy. He teaches philosophy at Rutgers University, and has previously held teaching and research positions at Boston University and the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

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