On Machiavelli: The Search for Glory - Liveright Classics (Hardback)Alan Ryan (author)
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A well-educated son of Florence, Machiavelli was originally in charge of the Florentine Republic's militia, but in 1512 the city fell to papal forces led by Cardinal Giovanni de Medici, who thus restored the Medici family to power. Machiavelli was accused of conspiracy, imprisoned, tortured, and eventually exiled from his beloved Florence, and it was during this period that he produced his most famous works. While attempting to ingratiate himself to the Medicis, the historically minded Machiavelli looked to the imperial ambitions and past glories of the Roman Republic as a contrast to the perceived failures of his contemporaries.
For Machiavelli, the hunger for power and glory was inextricable from human nature, and any serious attempt to rule must take this into account. In his revolutionary The Prince and Discourses-both excerpted here-Machiavelli created the first truly modern analysis of power.
Publisher: WW Norton & Co
Number of pages: 208
Weight: 260 g
Dimensions: 193 x 124 x 20 mm
"Alan Ryan captures Machiavelli's hold on the modern moral imagination when he says, "The staying power of The Prince comes from...its insistence on the need for a clear-sighted appreciation of how men really are as distinct from the moralizing claptrap about how they ought to be." This moral clarity remains bracing in an era like our own, when politicians hide the necessary ruthlessness of political life behind the rhetoric of family values and Christian principles .... We are still drawn to Machiavelli because we sense how impatient he was with the equivalent flummery in his own day, and how determined he was to confront a problem that preoccupies us too: when and how much ruthlessness is necessary in the world of politics." -- Michael Ignatieff - The Atlantic
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