Machiavelli

Machiavelli - Niccolo Machiavelli Born 3 May 1469 Died 20...

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Niccolo Machiavelli Born 3 May 1469 Died 20 June 1527 Buried at Santa Croce Church, Florence Italy Important dates: 1494-1512: Florentine Republic 1498-1212: Machiavelli's public service 1512-1527: Medici principality 1513: Machiavelli tortured, exiled by Medici 1520: Commission from Medici to write History of Florence 1527: Medici deposed; Machiavelli dies Important concepts: Republicanism, virtue, corruption, political realism
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The Classical and the Modern Political Ideals We can no longer enjoy the liberty of the ancients, which consisted in an active and constant participation in collective power. Our freedom must consist of peaceful enjoyment and private independence. Constant Machiavelli’s challenge The virtues of men have shone most during their struggles, not after the attainment of their ends. Those ends themselves, though attained by virtue, are frequently the causes of corruption and vice. Mankind, in aspiring to national felicity, have substituted arts which increase their riches, instead of those which improve their nature. They have entertained admiration of themselves, under the titles of civilized and of polished, where they should have been affected with shame; and even where they have for a while acted on maxims tending to raise, to invigorate, and to preserve the national character, they have, sooner or later, been diverted from their object, and fallen a prey to misfortune, or to the neglects which prosperity itself had encouraged. Ferguson
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Social/Political Changes Historical Moments Philosophical Themes Trade Renaissance (c15-16) Secularism Urbanization Reformation (c16) Individualism Centralization Scientific Revolution (c16-17) Scientism Religious diversity Enlightenment (c18) Popular gov’t Age of Revolution (c18-19) Modern Thought "Highlights" Machiavelli’s context: Rise of centralizing monarchies (especially Spain, France) Expansion of trade -- with Italy at its hub b/c near Mediterranean Corruption of Church Strife among Italian city-states
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Machiavelli’s challenge What would make Italy
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Machiavelli - Niccolo Machiavelli Born 3 May 1469 Died 20...

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