restricted access The Objective-Subjective Dichotomy and Rand's Trichotomy


The term "objective" has both a metaphysical and an epistemological meaning, and each of these meanings gives rise to a corresponding objective-subjective dichotomy. A formal definition of (epistemological) objectivity is given, and this clarifies the nature of the epistemological dichotomy. These dichotomies are represented by classes of existents, and a Venn-type diagram is used to illustrate the relationship between them. It is shown that the class of all existents can be partitioned into three mutually exclusive and exhaustive classes, which correspond to Rand's intrinsic-subjective-objective trichotomy.