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Lecture 1

POL200Y1 Lecture 1: Intro - Machiavelli


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POL200Y1
Professor
Clifford Orwin
Lecture
1

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Modernity:
Faith in progress
Genetic Engineering:
Reports of couples in the future will build their offspring
Are thinkers today still modern? (Study question #1)
Some are modern, others are post-modern
o How to distinguish?
Post-modernism does not go back, always progresses
Takes authority of modernity
Post-Modernity:
Post-modernists claim to represent modern thoughts
Skepticism and Modernity:
Hope is skepticism will pursue good results by pushing away law and just ideas
Both ideas work together
Reasons for Praising Machiavelli:
Italian patriot
Nationalist, realist, pragmatist
Machiavelli is identified as modern by others
His modernity was strange to others who were thought to think a certain way at this time;
misunderstood because he was modern
Machiavelli:
Regarded as most evil human who ever lived
'The old nick' is the nickname for Satan
Why was he perceived by people of his generation as 'wicked'?
o Looked at as amoral
o Accepted, encouraged, and taught ruthlessness
o People believed his influence was pervasive
o A teacher, a tempter and corrupter
Similar to Satan (corrupter)
Gets you used to doing long tasks
Master of metaphors
Machiavelli's book is dedicated to Lorenzo's grandson
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