It is speculated that he attended the University of Florence, and even a cursory glance at his corpus reveals that he received an excellent humanist education. It is only with his entrance into public view, with his appointment as the Second Chancellor of the Republic of Florence, however, that we begin to acquire a full and accurate picture of his life. For the next fourteen years, Machiavelli engaged in a flurry of diplomatic activity on behalf of Florence, travelling to the major centers of Italy as well as to the royal court of France and to the imperial curia of Maximilian. We have letters, dispatches, and occasional writings that testify to his political assignments as well as to his acute talent for the analysis of personalities and institutions.
Machiavelli writes from a realistic perspective with no fantasies about men and human nature. While the two share ideas on human nature, the state of nature, and how religion is incorporated into secular rule, their ideas differ when it comes to types of government, self-preservation, and war.
Machiavelli greatly influenced Hobbes, especially on the views of the state of nature. Hobbes argues that all men are born equal and even the weak are able to kill the strong in his state of nature. However, from the vulnerable state of war comes a necessity to seek peace and establish the compact which is the state.
Each philosopher states that man must do whatever is necessary for survival. Because humans essentially want the same things, according to Hobbes, they will deceive and manipulate in order to attain their desires.
Men are driven by their passions and human reason is the means by which men attempt to slake their passions. In The Prince, Machiavelli writes about how the ruler or prince will appear to take action for the good of the people but in reality is only acting on his own selfish behalf.
He writes that Men in general judge more by their eyes than their hands…. Everyone sees how you appear, few touch what you are; and these few dare not oppose the opinions of many… So let a prince win and maintain his state: Though Machiavelli offers ideas on how a ruler should lead in The Prince, his actual thoughts on political philosophy lie in The Discourses, in which he advocates for a republic.
Hobbes advocates for an absolute sovereign or absolute government. Machiavelli argues that power and violence are central to politics. He does note in The Discourses, however, that it is morally repugnant to any community to do employ such methods.
Similar to Machiavelli, Hobbes argues that the government must use both force and fear to maintain and structure order in the state. He proceeds to call for a strong absolute government that determines what is just and unjust through a process called legal positivism.
Machiavelli writes of the prince having absolute power and doing what he wishes to meet his own goals. He also concludes that the prince should rule on two levels: By using both, the prince can maintain his power and make effective his rule.
Similarly, Hobbes notes that the government should use both the sword physical force and fear the law to ensure its role in and over society. Machiavelli, though an atheist, wrote that the prince must appear to be concerned with the faith of his subjects to appease them though he may not agree with the religion or make decisions based upon it.
Rather, he argues, the prince must judge each situation as it presents itself. Morals, in these cases, are judged based upon their usefulness in the situation.
If a person fears God more than his ruler, then he will follow the religious rules set forth by his religion as opposed to the laws set forth by the sovereign.
Ergo, Hobbes argues that religion must be incorporated into secular law in order to prevent disobedience. Each philosopher argues that the people place their trust and desires for self-preservation in the government. Hobbes proclaims that the people choose a sovereign through a compact, which he calls a covenant, and Machiavelli states that the people choose a representative for them in a republic.
There is an exception though: Machiavelli calls for a republic based on popular power and consent. The power in his republic is derived from the people for the interests of the people. They are to choose a representative who embellishes their beliefs; however, this representative should truly act upon their interests and not upon his own.
Machiavelli and Hobbes also have differing views on fighting in wars.
Machiavelli writes that if the people who were to fight were united for a cause, primarily to protect their own land, which they loved, they would fight to the death for their state.
He does preach, though, that war should be avoided at all costs because of the sacrifices that will be made during wartime.
The argument Hobbes makes is that if a man is fearful enough of his sovereign, then he will fight for the sovereign. Hobbes continues that if a man enlists in the army, then he is obliged to go into battle and not to leave unless his commanding officer permits such.
Neither is wrong in his way of thinking, and their influence has stretched far along the course of the human race. Each man brought to the table and enlightened and impressive pattern of thinking that continue to work their wonders on men every day. Works Cited Crick, Bernard. Deutsch and Joseph R.
Any questions, comments, concerns, or requests for reprinting can be submitted to bookendreviews gmail.Machiavelli's political views are, however, far too complex to be summed up in a few quick sentences.
You are much better served by reading The Prince and . Machiavelli points out that there are two kinds of fighting: according to the law and according to force.
The former is the way of men, the second the way of beasts – but the best princes know how to use both the man and the beast in order to achieve political goals. The major difference between Machiavelli and the Socratics, according to Strauss, is Machiavelli's materialism, and therefore his rejection of both a teleological view of nature and of the view that philosophy is higher than barnweddingvt.com: Renaissance philosophy.
Because of Machiavelli’s closer analysis of religion’s use of war and conflict to advance its own political power, he conceptualized the use of Realpolitik (), the idea that politics continues through war, years before the theory’s founder, Carl Von Clausewitz (−), was even alive.
What can you learn from Machiavelli? Robert P. Harrison January 01, One of the great insights of The Prince is that to be an effective ruler you must learn how to orchestrate the semiotics of power, It’s the human imagination that in the long run proves itself the truly efficacious and revolutionary force.
Niccolò Machiavelli was born into this unstable time of shifting fortunes in the year He formulated his own theory of effective government in a treatise known as "The Prince," and he based his ideal "Prince" on Cesare Borgia's life. argued that the most successful kings were not the ones who acted according to dictates of law, or.
Customarily, the name ‘Machiavelli’ was a synonym for the devil. The myth of the corrupt immorality of Niccolo Machiavelli () has lasted for many centuries, the description ‘Machiavellian’ being used today for anyone who is seen slyly to manipulate a given situation to their own advantage by means of shrewd political insight. Niccolo Machiavelli and Political Philosophy Essay; Niccolo Machiavelli and Political Philosophy By this, Machiavelli is referring to both the effective and non-effective uses of force. Machiavelli states that "Good use is when is when they [acts of cruelty] are perpetrated all at once and subsequently not repeated.". By this, Machiavelli is referring to both the effective and non-effective uses of force. Machiavelli states that "Good use is when is when they [acts of cruelty] are .