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Mark Twain's Advice To Youth

Decent Essays
Both Mark Twain and Niccolò Machiavelli offer unconventional advice to the reader. However, the audiences that the authors target are different. Specifically, Twain gears his advice towards the youth, while Machiavelli gears his advice towards a prince, Lorenzo de’ Medici. Twain targets the youth with his unconventional advice in his lecture, “Advice to Youth.” He advises the youth to, “[b]e respectful to [their] superiors, if [they] have any” (Twain 365). This aspect of his advice can certainly be applied to today’s younger generation, as far too many children disrespect their parents by talking back. Also, far too many students disrespect their teachers by interrupting the teachers or talk while the teachers are talking. This is in direct violation of what Twain advises. The children and students are not…show more content…
Superiors also tend to have more experience and know better than the children and students. As a result of this disrespect, children can be grounded or beaten, and students can be kicked out of class or given detentions. Consequently, the children and students should respect their superiors, as disrespecting superiors can eventually be disadvantageous to the youth. Twain also advises the youth to not, “resort to extreme measures . . . [because dynamite should be left] to the low and unrefined” (365). Essentially, the author is advising the youth to not react impulsively with violence, but instead to wait for the right opportunity. Too many times, teenagers engage in pointless fights when a better solution is doing nothing or treating the wrongdoers kindly. After all, impulsivity and violence often bring about ineffective or short-lived results. Additionally, I believe that all of Twain’s advice is still relevant. Machiavelli targets the prince mentioned above with his unconventional advice in the excerpt, “The Morals of the Prince,” from his book, The Prince. The statement
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