Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Case for Seeming Over Being: Machiavelli

Machiavelli's view of goodness in context: "A man who wishes to make a profession of goodness in everything must necessarily come to grief among so many who are not good" (63).

Ch. 18: Machiavelli uses the mythic example of Chiron, the centaur, and the animals of the lion and the fox to illustrate some of the ways a prince must act.

Ultimately, and most importantly for our focus, he concludes:

"It is not, therefore, necessary for a prince to have all the above-named qualities, but it is very necessary to seem to have them" (73).

Ch. 23: Echoing Cicero's warning against flatterers, Machiavelli picks up the question, really, of friendship, and to whom a prince should listen to for counsel.

1 comment:

  1. Ah! So Prof. has Machiavelli perhaps got something to do with the some of reasons you leant towards "being"(!) a centaur in S.L. ? hmm...