Leonard E. Read

Leonard E. Read (1898-1983) was the founder of FEE, and the author of 29 works, including the classic parable “I, Pencil: My Family Tree as told to Leonard E. Read.” Born in Michigan, his early life was marked by hard work and diligent study. After serving in the armed forces during World War I, he began a wholesale grocery business, and later became manager of the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce. As the New Deal began, Read became a vocal critic of policies limiting freedom and expanding government. This drive prompted him to found FEE in 1946, promoting the freedom philosophy through lectures, seminars, books, and The Freeman magazine.

Related Publications

Archive

Pattern for Revolt

JULY 03, 2013 by LEONARD E. READ

Multimedia

I, Pencil

JANUARY 28, 2010 by LEONARD READ, LEONARD E. READ

Eloquent. Extraordinary. Timeless. Paradigm-shifting. Classic. Half a century after it first appeared, Leonard Read's 'I, Pencil' still evokes such adjectives of praise. Rightfully so, for this little essay opens eyes and minds among people of all ages. Many first-time readers never see the world quite the same again.

Archive

Vision

AUGUST 03, 2009 by LEONARD E. READ

Archive

Then Truth Will Out

AUGUST 03, 2009 by LEONARD E. READ

Archive

Castles In The Air

JULY 29, 2009 by LEONARD E. READ

Archive

I, Pencil (Audio, PDF and HTML)

DECEMBER 01, 2008 by LEONARD E. READ

No one knows how to make a pencil. Revisit Leonard Read's classic (Audio, HTML, and PDF versions.)

CURRENT ISSUE

September 2014

For centuries, hierarchical models dominated human organizations. Kings, warlords, and emperors could rally groups--but also oppress them. Non-hierarchical forms of organization, though, are increasingly defining our lives. It's no secret how this shift has benefited out social lives, including dating, and it's becoming more commonplace even in the corporate world. But it has also now come even to organizations bent on domination rather than human flourishing, as the Islamic State shows. If even destructive groups rely on this form of entrepreneurial organization, then hierarchy's time could truly be coming to an end.
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