preview

Anthem

Satisfactory Essays
In Ayn Rand's book, Anthem, the two main characters, Equality and Liberty, name themselves after two Greek Gods, Prometheus and Gaea, respectfully. Prometheus was the Greek God of forethought and crafty counsel, and Gaea was the Greek God of the Earth and the mother of virtually all beings. Rand had her main characters choose names after these mythological Gods because their lives were very similar, symbolically.
Prometheus was instructed by the other Gods to craft humanity out of clay. Once he did so, he became attached to his creations. Against the wishes of the other Gods, Prometheus taught mankind all of the arts, such as the use of fire, acquaintance with architecture, astronomy, mathematics, the art of writing, the treatment of domestic animals, navigation, medicine, the art of prophecy, working in metal, and all the other arts. Zeus, the leader of the Gods, tried to punish Prometheus for his teachings by taking fire away from man. Prometheus again defied Zeus by stealing back the fire and returning it to man. In another instance of Prometheus defiance, mankind was angry that they were forced to give all of the good cuts of meat to the Gods as offerings. In order to please his creation, Prometheus tricked Zeus by misleading him into choosing the least desirable parts of a cow as his offering and thus leaving the most desirable cuts to mankind for consumption. Prometheus was pleased with his deception, but it enraged Zeus. In order to punish him, Zeus ordered that Prometheus be chained to a rock in the pit of Tartarus and for an eagle to eat out his liver daily and allow Prometheus's liver to regenerate each night.

Equality, one of the main characters in Anthem, lived in a society of collectivism. Collec...

... middle of paper ...

...o is Liberty seemingly inseparable from Equality. She followed Equality when he ran away, leaving everything else behind to reunite with her love. "Do as you please, but do not send us away from you." (83) Thirdly, Gaea is the mother of almost all of the gods and living things everywhere, and Liberty is going to be the mother of a new race of men. Hence, Gaea and Liberty are similar in the way that they are both maternal figures and the mothers of peoples. Finally, Gaea is a very suitable name for a character such as Liberty.
In summary, Rand had her two main characters pick the names of Prometheus and Gaea because the lives of these Greek Gods were very similar (symbolically) to the lives of the two main characters (Equality and Liberty). Equality and Prometheus were/are the bringers of knowledge and wisdom, and Liberty and Gaea were/are the mothers of all.
Get Access