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Comparing Sun Tzu And Machiavelli's The Prince

Decent Essays
Leadership is the backbone of both Sun Tzu’s The Art of War, and Machiavelli’s The Prince. I will explore how Sun Tzu’s and Machiavelli’s perspectives on leadership contrast because of how each author explores the concept of morality and human nature. To accomplish this, one must understand that leadership in this context refers to both diplomatic and militarily. First, I will explain how each writer’s perspective on leadership differs, and how morality ties into both of their concepts about leadership, which explores both writer’s concepts on diplomatic leadership. Then I will move into warfare, and discuss each writer’s views on how war should be executed and what utility it serves, which will show the rigid dichotomy between them. This in effect will open the discussion of human nature, in which I will explain how each writer views human nature, and what they do to deal with their view on the inherent human nature. This is important because it…show more content…
In terms of general leadership, both Sun Tzu and Machiavelli have different ideas of what leaders should be responsible for. Sun Tzu suggests that the two roles of leading diplomatically and leading militarily should be separated (The Art of War, 16-17), and that the avenue for power for a military leader is morality, which Sun Tzu refers to as “The Way” (The Art of War, 3). The goal of the leader’s morality in this case is to allow their subjects to be united in mind, and to be happy to serve their leader. This point is furthered when Sun Tzu lists one of the factors of command as compassion (The Art of War, 4), and when Sun Tzu says that “The Skillful Strategist
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