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PHIL 1610
Iva Apostolova

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Born and lived in Florence. The Prince, written around 1513, was dedicated to Lorenzo de Medici, a brutal ruler of Florence. He was a diplomate. He was cockered one of the first political philosophers and was founder of tactics, the art of war. The Prince remained his most popular work in which he describes human nature and what should not be expected from a ruler. Opposite of Plato's philosophy, however there are similarities between the two thinkers. The first idea is the idea of state. Plato's republic describes an imaginary and non-achivable state. Machiavelli described how things are. For Machiavelli and Plato, the state is a unity that requires balance. Machiavelli's method: scientific and critical approach of dissection of all available facts. Human nature: Machiavelli: humans are a "sorry lot" = Human nature is a mixture of good and evil, of virtues and vices, and in many cases vices prevail. Human soul: Machiavelli: the human soul is weakened and corrupt, that is, not harmonious. Machiavelli: we live in a world of appearances and just like Plato, Machiavelli thought that the soul is more often than not deceived by appearances and outcomes of things. Machiavelli: humans are much more interested in the consequences than in the reasons of things because the consequences affect us directly. The world of forms: not a concern for the ordinary people or for the ruler either. The ruler: A ruler should be able to balance between virtues and vices. Ordinary people can afford to be only bad or only good. But a ruler cannot afford to be either the one or the other. Because we live in a world of appearances, and virtues and vices are contingen
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