She shook her head in an involuntary recoil of horror.
A dim impulse, like the recoil of an antagonist, made her want to check on what strength was left to her.
She felt a stab of horror, the convulsion of a mind rejecting a sight that would destroy it-a stab like a swift recoil from the edge of insanity.
He was seeing the nature of those who, for centuries, had not recoiled from the preachers of annihilation-he was seeing the nature of the enemies he had been fighting all his life.
She had been flung here by the blind panic of escape, as if it were she who had to hide, she who had to run from the ugliness of being seen in the act of seeing them-a panic made of revulsion, of pity, of embarrassment, of that mental chastity which recoils from confronting a man with the unanswerable proof of his evil.
Then, as if by some dim recoil against self-pity, he added, reciting a memorized lesson, his voice a desperate attempt at his old, cynical, intellectual tone, "What does it matter, Mr. Rearden? …. Man is only a collection of …. conditioned chemicals …. and a man’s dying doesn’t make …. any more difference than an animal’s."
There are no more uses of "recoil" in the book.
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a low-recoil rifle
Most Americans recoil at the thought of government using torture.