Essay about The Prince by Machiavelli

Essay about The Prince by Machiavelli

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Machiavelli’s the Prince is a 16th-century extended analysis of how to acquire and maintain political power. While many are cynical of Machiavelli’s intention when writing The Prince, the works of earlier writers seem to indicate that his piece was indeed a reflection on how a ruler ought to govern. The dedication declares Machiavelli's intention to discuss in plain language the conduct of great men and the principles of princely government. He states that he does so in hope of pleasing and enlightening the Medici family and offers it as a “some token of his devotion.” (Skinner) Italy was struggling with its limits on power and Machiavelli responded accordingly. His advice corresponds with his time and appears to be given in a genuine way. In his instruction he discusses morality, the importance of the public welfare, and the use of violence in order to explain how to best run a state. Machiavelli’s view of politics dealt with political upheaval, beginning with being overly concerned with public security and the well being of the community, while his predecessors worried more about morals effecting politics. Ultimately, his objective was to provide an avenue in which he could instruct rulers how to successfully rule through pragmatism. Although he is severely criticized by many people, he writes for the unification of Italian principalities and he has a strict political cause
Niccolò Machiavelli was born into this unstable time of shifting fortunes in the year 1469. He served in a number of minor government positions, and was banished or imprisoned at various points of his career. One of his most notable positions was serving as a sort of political advisor to the Borgia family. The head of the family, Alexander Borgia, was Pope. T...


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...litical thought.
The Prince has long rested on his description of the tactics by which political power can be seized and maintained without regard for moral ends. Hence Machiavelli has long endured a lasting reputation as the philosopher-king of political manipulation. Despite his somewhat questionable image The Prince had a great influence that would endure through the years. Machiavelli incorporated, built upon, and ultimately transformed earlier writers works into a piece fit for his time period of shifting powers ultimately emphasizing pragmatism in ruling. He engaged many of the themes of classical and Renaissance political thought and incorporated Florentine political debate. (Hornqvist) He did more than redefine a theoretical way in which people discussed politics. Machiavelli provided a work that directly engaged his political era ripe with practical advice.

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