Similarities Between Socrates And Machiavelli

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Socrates vs. Machiavelli: Complete Enemies Within many Political Science classes the students study many works by political philosophers of the past. Whether the students are studying these pieces to learn from past mistakes or to apply this wisdom to the world they live in, these students have many take aways from these brilliant pieces. Two pieces of work that have been studied in depth are Machiavelli’s The Prince and The Last Days of Socrates by Plato. Within The Prince , Machiavelli depicts the qualities needed for a “perfect” prince, while he touching on the notion that deceitfulness and lying while ruling is okay, if it makes the state as powerful as can be. However in Plato’s work, Socrates philosophy is quite the opposite. Socrates believes in honesty, following the rules, and making the state the most powerful through politics instead of violence. As these two works both try to describe the way to achieve an ultimately perfect society they are seen to differ one another greatly. Socrates would view Machiavelli’s concept of The Prince in a dishonest and deceitful light and would not be supportive of the political system in which said Prince would run. A major difference between these two political philosophers is the idea of deceit. Machiavelli explains deceit by a political leader should be tolerated as long as it is helping to strengthen its political system. He values how one looks on the outside compared to what they are actually doing to their people. As
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