Essay about Morality: Comparing Hobbes and Machiavelli

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One of the main premises of Leviathan and The Prince is morality. Where morality comes from, how it affects people under a political structure and how human nature contributes or doesn’t to morality. Hobbes and Machiavelli differ widely on each subject. Machiavelli’s views on morality, based upon a literal interpretation of the satire The Prince, is very much a practical and realistic approach to the nature of morality and human nature. Hobbes’ views, based in Leviathan, are of a more idealistic nature, and my views are a little in between the two. One of the major connections between the two works is the relationship between morality and the state. Both differ widely on where morality comes from and whether the state’s origin is from…show more content…
If it pleases the people that you rely on, it can be considered "good." In Hobbes' Leviathan, the conclusion on the nature between morality and the state is that the "Leviathan," i.e. the state, is responsible for the creation of morality and that without the state, man is without morality and is, in fact, a savage. Hobbes claims that the state originates morality by way of discussing human nature. He says: "So that in the nature of man, we find three principal causes of quarrel. First, competition; secondly, diffidence; thirdly, glory...Hereby it is manifest, that during the time men lie without common power to keep them all in awe, they are in that condition which is called war...Whatsoever therefore is consequent to a time of war, where every manis enemy to every man; the same is consequent to the time, wherein men live without other scrutiny, than what their own strengthm and their own invention shall furnish withal." (Leviathan 592) What Hobbes is saying here, is that man, in a state of nature, is not moral.These three things (competition, diffidence, glory), are all that savage man has without government or "without common power" as Hobbes puts it. Therefore, the state removes the state of savagery from the nature of man and puts in morality. There is a connection between the ideas of

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