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Lecture Jan 29.docx

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Political Science
Mark Lippincott

POL200 - Take Machiavelli in context! Not each statement independently Machiavelli’s Discourse - What politics is all about - No radical break between what he has said in Prince vs Discourse - See it as stages; themes given in Prince are reinforced in Discourses - Machiavelli is not talking to the Prince any more o Prince is simplified o Discourse is explained - Focus on Rome - Machiavelli has a cyclical view of history - Italians being at the bottom of the cycle o Dominated o Civil war o Hostile to each other o Individualized o Don’t like politics - Italy was at the lowest state of human nature - Romulus: mythic founder of Rome (brother Remus) o Abandoned as children in the woods and left to die o Adopted by a she-wolf and raised as wolves o They outgrow the wolf pack o They unite the warring tribes of Rome because of their savage nature; able to conquer and unite o Romulus decides to kill Remus for political reasons (not because he is jealous, envious etc) o There can only be one ruler at the beginning; having two leaders at the outset will cause dissent and fracture, it will be an unstable foundatio
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