Machiavellis Idea Of Government Essay

1514 Words7 Pages
MACHIAVELLI: THE PRINCE: Themes and Ideas      During Machiavelli’s time, society was much different than it had been for previous philosophers. Instead of storing up good works, so as to enjoy paradise, as the medieval man did, the Renaissance man was interested in all things, enjoyed life, strove for worldly acclaim and wealth, and had a deep interest in classical civilizations. He was born at a time of conflict within Florence, Italy, between the republican leaders and the family of the Medici’s, of which the Machiavelli’s, especially, had a history of opposition towards. After years of conflict between powers, Machiavelli was exiled from his country.      It was during this exile that…show more content…
He sees no purpose in restraining and controlling oneself for the society because the society will not prosper if the ruler does not. Ruthlessness, maliciousness, and deviousness are all hailed as being acceptable, in fact encouraged, as means of securing position of power. Through his prioritizing, Machiavelli does not seem to be as concerned with the society and the individual as the previous philosophers in history have been. Rather, he sees power as the one and only goal in life, regardless of the individual or the state. Again, though, he is a reflection of his times. The men of the Renaissance era wanted many things--money, power, enjoyment in life--regardless of the moral cost. Others would argue that these superfluities either meant nothing or would not occur without restraining the desires of both ones self and ones state. One needs balance of everything in order to reach the ideals of perfection, but Machiavelli would argue that perfection is not real and so is not worth striving for. Instead, one must live for ones self. He makes the generalization of men that: they are ungrateful, fickle, dissembling, anxious to flee danger, and covetous of gain. So long as you promote their advantage, they are all yours. . .and will offer you their blood, their goods, their lives, and their children
Open Document