Compare Locke and Machiavelli on the relationship between ruler and subjects

Compare Locke and Machiavelli on the relationship between ruler and subjects

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Compare Locke and Machiavelli on the relationship between ruler and subjects Name: Kevin Ho Student Number:211546587 Section: A Tutorial leader: William Gleberzon Tutorial number: 02 Assignment type: Essay Date: 09/11/11 AP/HUMA 1720 6.00 The Roots of Western Culture. The Modern Period York University
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1. Compare Locke and Machiavelli on the relationship between ruler and subjects Two exceptional Renaissance philosophers, John Locke and Niccolo Machiavelli, spent their lifetime seeking ways to build a better society. In their respective works, they propose theories of what a ruler should and should not do in order to win the consent and support of their subjects. However, Locke’s Two Treaties on Civil Government is the antithesis of Machiavelli’s The Prince . Whereas Machiavelli’s book advises a prince how to win and hold power, Locke’s book is written against a prince (King-James II), presenting an alternative ideology – liberalism to the absolutist and dictators. Locke and Machiavelli both reject religious pieties and interpretations. Locke denies the idea of ‘divine right’ claimed by King James II, who declared that God had granted him supreme right and therefore he would only be held accountable to God, not his subjects. Locke refutes the idea of ‘divine right’ in his First Treatise and denounces it as tyranny and absolutism (Knoebel, 1988,P.68). Machiavelli’s methodology suggests what a prince should do to win and maintain his absolute power. He states that a prince has to act and not depend on God because “God will not do everything Himself” (Machiavelli, 1992, P.69). “Those who from a private station become princes by mere good fortune… have much trouble to maintain themselves” (Machiavelli, 1992, P.15 ) In other words, a prince must obtain and maintain his power without replying on
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Compare Locke and Machiavelli on the relationship between ruler and subjects

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