Machiavelli's Book "The Prince". Essay

4585 words - 18 pages

When I set out to write this paper I pondered how can I make this an interesting paper? So I thought that I would take Niccolo` Machiavelli "The Prince" and give a twenty year-old Generation X's views on his masterpiece. So with that I will try to give you my opinions on what I think of Machiavelli's book and the idea's there in. The first idea that I will discuss is Machiavelli's view on how many principalities there are and ways to obtain them. In "The Prince" Machiavelli explains that in his view there are two types of principalities. The first being a principality that is inherited and the second being a new principality. The first one he deals with is the inherited principality. The inherited principality is one that has been ruled by an established family for a long period of time. New principalities are principalities that have that can or have been acquired by fortune or prowess. He says that when a person acquires a new principality it is much more difficult to hold onto than one that has been inherited. In an inherited one the people in the area have always had these rulers and just believe that they have the right to be in control. I agree totally with Machiavelli here in that a person who is put in control or has taken control, especially if taken by violent measures they will have a difficult time keeping control. I believe this because the people who live there will not have much faith in a person who has taken control not by his god given right but by military strength or ruthlessness. This is especially true if the previous ruler was well liked by the people and they did not want a change in the way they were being governed. He will not be well received by his followers because he has disrupted their life that until he came was going pretty well.I also agree with the statement he makes that "What happens is that men willingly change their ruler, expecting to fare better. This expectation induces them to take up arms against him; but they only deceive themselves, and they learn from experience that they have only made matters worse." The only problem with this statement is that is kind of outdated. Many revolutions that have occurred many years after Machiavelli's death have proved this statement wrong many times over. At the time he wrote this book it is pretty accurate in his idea. In today's time however, the United States for one has proved it wrong, because not only did we break away form England but we have thrived since breaking away. He also says that "This follows from another common and natural necessity an: a prince is always compelled to injure those who have made him new ruler, subjecting them to the troops and imposing the endless other hardships which his new conquest entails." I think that what Machiavelli is trying to say here is that as a new ruler, that this prince must make an example of someone. And by injuring a person whose has helped to gain power it sets the precedent that he is not going to be pushed by...

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