Machiavellis Prince: Relevance Today - Essay Example

Comments (1) Cite this document
Machiavelli’s Prince is intended to be a practical guide for the Renaissance rulers of sixteenth century Italy. As such, its relevance, as a whole, to today’s modern world is debatable. As it is directed towards the absolute, autocratic rule of principalities…
Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER98.2% of users find it useful
Machiavellis Prince: Relevance Today
Read TextPreview

Extract of sample "Machiavellis Prince: Relevance Today"

Machiavelli’s Prince: Relevance Today. Machiavelli’s Prince is intended to be a practical guide for the Renaissance rulers of sixteenth century Italy. As such, its relevance, as a whole, to today’s modern world is debatable. As it is directed towards the absolute, autocratic rule of principalities, it does not contain much application for the largely well-informed, democracy-inclined, internet-connected citizens of the twenty-first century. However, Machiavelli’s treatise contains several valuable pointers as to the ideal characters of a neophyte ruler. Personally, as the ruler of my own country, I would adopt Machiavelli’s recommendation to maintain foresight and flexibility of character, and some of his guidelines on the virtues of a wise ruler. I would disregard his instructions regarding the ruthless consolidation of power through fear. I agree with Machiavelli’s stand that Fortune, or chance, is not the complete arbiter of the destiny of the ruler and the state. Pure chance dictates the terms only when “barriers and defences have not been raised to constrain her” (Machiavelli, XXV). Machiavelli’s comparison of fortune to a river in spate is a very apt illustration of the virtue of foresight in a ruler. The ruler who builds dykes and canals “when the weather becomes fair” (Machiavelli, XXV), can harness the power of the flood for good, and neuter its destructive power. Machiavelli’s advice to the ruler to be prepared for any eventuality is definitely something I can identify with. As a ruler, foresight and flexibility will be invaluable tools to retain power. This can extend from building up defenses against perceived terrorist threats, to providing for future fuel shortage by finding alternative energy sources. Machiavelli’s guidance on the characteristics of a wise ruler is often very relevant even today. His caution against the excess clemency, which would “allow disorders to arise, from which follow murders or robberies” (Machiavelli, XVII), holds good in the face of the lawlessness which can plague poorly policed modern cities. Law enforcement must never be compromised. I particularly admire Machiavelli’s advice to the ruler “to be a great pretender and dissembler” (Machiavelli, XVIII). I would interpret this as a form of modern day diplomacy, which would definitely be an asset to me as a ruler! Maintaining the facade of being “merciful, faithful, humane, upright, and religious” (Machiavelli, XVIII) would serve to gain a good reputation. In this context, I would definitely follow Machiavelli’s exhortations to patronize the arts, encourage commerce and agriculture, and provide entertainment for my subjects, as all this will serve to keep them happy with my rule. The ruthless consolidation of power through fear is the main part of Machiavelli’s advice that I would disregard. I do not accept Machiavelli’s assertion that people can be ruled “by a dread of punishment” (XVII) alone. Machiavelli bases his recommendation on his perception of one’s subjects as “ungrateful, fickle, false, cowardly, covetous” (XVII). This is not true of the modern world. The high levels of literacy and education, and the myriad means of communication, from Facebook to Twitter, make repression an outdated means of retaining power. Egypt remains a potent current example of overthrown tyranny. As the ruler of my own country, I would make preparations of all contingencies. I would develop a flexibility of character which would enable me to adopt appropriate strategies according to the varying circumstances. I would make the effort to garner good publicity, and gain “the reputation of being a great and remarkable man” (Machiavelli, XXI), as this would definitely earn me the support of my subjects. On the other hand, I would dispense with using repression and tyranny as my tools of power, as these will prove short-lived in the modern world. Read More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
(“Machiavellis Prince: Relevance Today Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 500 words”, n.d.)
Retrieved from
(Machiavellis Prince: Relevance Today Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 500 Words)
“Machiavellis Prince: Relevance Today Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 500 Words”, n.d.
  • Cited: 0 times
Comments (1)
Click to create a comment or rate a document
wandamraz added comment 1 year ago
Student rated this paper as
At first, I thought 2 of pages is too much for such a subject. But now I see it could not be done smarter. As the author starts you see the complexity of the subject. I’ve read all at once. Great sample

CHECK THESE SAMPLES OF Machiavellis Prince: Relevance Today

Machiavellis rationalization

... Teacher There are a number of things for which princes can be either praised or blamed Machiavelli s. He also argues that since princes are men as well, they can not possibly attain complete goodness. Thus, they should not even bother to aim for such a thing. Instead they should only work out such a scheme which allows them to highlight their virtues and simultaneously sideline their flaws. But though the Machiavellian argument supports blind throne domination in authority, it has its own drawbacks; it fails to account for the repercussions one faces for indulging in vices for the sake of remaining in power. Machiavelli’s rationalization is deeply flawed. He argues that rulers should do all to maintain his power and what is most... ...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

Niccol Machiavellis The Prince

...? Niccolo Machiavelli’s The Prince: Book Review Niccolo Machiavelli’s renowned 16th century political treatise The Prince or Il Principe, has been the cause of much interest and study over the last few hundred years. Its relevance in the modern day is accounted for by its very lucid and practical style of writing. The book serves as a political guide for rulers and has been reputed to be a favorite of dictators like Stalin. The influence of this slim book is so profound in fact that a term ‘Machiavellian’ has been coined from it and has passed into common use. The word usually denotes ruthless cunning, deceit, duplicity and reflects how the audience...
3 Pages(750 words)Book Report/Review

Philosophy Questions (Machiavellis Statement )

... only when advancement within society are stopped and people within nations become self sufficient to the extent that social exchanges across societies is not required. Since this cannot be envisaged within the current environment of advancing technology and globalization, Machiavelli’s statement become highly relevant in the current times. (words: 243) Reference Jacobus, Lee A. A World of Ideas: Essential Readings For College Writers. 8th Edition. Bedford/St. Martin's. 2009.... ?Answer I totally agree with the ments primarily because these are important issues within and outside the civil society that significantly impact the psyche of human being. They also have strong political importance. They are extremely relevant...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

Why Scientific Management Has No Relevance Today

..., its principles are not applicable in the contemporary organizations (Taylor 2003, p. 8). Why Scientific Management Has No Relevance Today Scientific management is irrelevant in the current society because unlike in the past, workers are more intelligent today. This is because they know their values in the work places. Consequently, they consider any processes that seem to challenge their worth as self-depreciating. When scientific management was still relevant, employees were offered the fiscal rewards only. This is because workers valued economic rewards during that time. However, most organizations increase their productivity by controlling all factors in the work...
8 Pages(2000 words)Essay

Relevance of Individualism in Life Today

...Relevance of Individualism in Life Today Introduction Individualism is the virtue of a person expressing self-reliability and being self-independent regardless of the surrounding world with different views of individuals’ doctrines related to moral, ideology , social , and political philosophy. Individualism entails a number of issues including individual’s freedom of choice, self-reliance, autonomy, and self-responsibility, which are virtues that uniquely identifies an individual from collectivism. The most important virtue of individualism is self-reliance that Emerson extensively explains inn details [1-16]. Self-reliance is the virtue of individualism, which enable an individual to have a strong...
4 Pages(1000 words)Essay

Scientific Management And Its Relevance Today

... Scientific Management And Its Relevance Today Abstract Taylor developed the principles of scientific management during the scientific revolution of 19th century over a hundred years ago. His principles on the best way to do a task and worker selection are some of his ideas that have continued to elicit varied reactions in management sector. There are those who think that Taylor’s ideas placed greater emphasis on the organization at the expense of the worker. Those who hold such views think that scientific management was not effective then and cannot be in the present days. This essay argues that Taylor’s scientific management system had its weaknesses, but the weakness can guide research towards making the theory more relevant... employers...
8 Pages(2000 words)Essay

Niccol Machiavellis The Prince

...and how these ideas may influence leadership decisions today; the reasons why or why not a utopian vision can apply to a corporation or a unit in the military; the relationship between followership and leadership is discussed; and, how states of mind (including paranoia) can influence the organization's culture and the behavior of followers. Background History Machiavelli (1469-1527) is from Florence, a republic in what is now Italy. He rose through the ranks as a public official and by the age of 31 became a diplomat and military officer, forming and heading the republic's state militia. After his release from prison in 1513 following a change of political leadership, he wrote The...
5 Pages(1250 words)Book Report/Review

The Prince

..., ravaged by Ferdinand and treated with contempt by the Swiss' (Machiavelli 47). The core of the US army is native citizens motivated by ideas of freedom and global peace, heroism and global security (Parallels: "Machiavellian" Politics Today 2008). To some extent, the US army tries to maintain a control over the territories in Iraq. these goals, Machiavelli thinks, are not especially difficult to attain--at least in their minimum form-where a prince has inherited a dominion 'accustomed to the rule of those belonging to the present ruler's family' (Machiavelli 6). But they are very hard for a new prince to achieve, particularly if he...
4 Pages(1000 words)Book Report/Review

Machiavelli's The Prince and Leadership

...describes that successful leadership is when influence brings about behavior and results that were intended by the leader. In contrast there come princes who cannot command “because they do not have forces that might be friendly and faithful to them” (Machiavelli, 1984). This example shows that leadership is more than just adherence to a formal role prescription. It is more than eliciting mechanical behavior which results from a supe­rior-subordinate relationship in a hierarchical structure. Effective leadership means successful functional behavior and the achievement of group goals. Today, a leader may be imposed, formally appointed or elected, chosen informally, or emerge naturally...
5 Pages(1250 words)Essay


...Relevance Part Psychology is the learning of a person’s mind and the way it functions especially those that affect behavior in a given context. Over time, psychology has been greatly accepted worldwide due to much of its beneficial factors (Neivid, 2009). Human has learnt to interact among themselves and to understand responses from different kinds of animals’ behavior through psychology. They are able to train animals to behave in a manner they would like. Behavior has been understood to be affected by consequences. According to Weiner, 2010, People are rewarded or punished in respect to the way they are expected to behave. In other instances, operant behavior is applied to suppress a certain behavior (Weiner &...
1 Pages(250 words)Coursework
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.

Let us find you another Essay on topic Machiavellis Prince: Relevance Today for FREE!

Contact Us