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Preview — The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli
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The Prince is the most controversial book about winning power - and holding on to it - ever written. Machiavelli's tough-minded, pragmatic argument that sometimes it is necessary to abandon ethics to succeed made his name notorious. Yet his book has been read by strategists, politicians and business people ever since as the ultimate guide to realpolitik.
How can a leader b...more
Another quote along this line (if I remember correctly) is "We should always seek to emulate our savior, Jesus Christ, and forgive our enemies ... but if we do, we will be killed." (less)
That single statement boys and girls is the crux at the heart of the matter resting at the bottom-line of Niccolo Machiavelli’s world-changing classic on the defining use of realpolitik in governance and foreign policy. Despite popular perception, Machiavelli, whose name has often been used as a synonym for political ASSHATery, was not arguing that it’s better to be immoral, cruel and evil than to be moral, just and good. Rather, Machiavelli was demonstrating, through reasoned analysis based o ...more
I'd like to say that any guy whose last name becomes a synonym for evil is a badass, but Machiavelli wasn't; he was a failed minor diplomat who wrote this in a failed attempt to get reemployed. Stupid attempt, too; anyone who hired him would be advertisin ...more
The Prince was written in the 16th century and a couple of its ideas are too contemporary. It is a major treatise that influenced several political le ...more
The Prince (Italian: Il Principe) is a 16th-century political treatise by the Italian diplomat and political theorist Niccolò Machiavelli. From correspondence a version appears to have been distributed in 1513, using a Latin title, De Principatibus (Of Principalities). However, the printed version was not published until 1532, five years after Machiavelli's death. Machiavelli said that The Prince would be about princedoms, mentioning that he has writt ...more
The Prince (Italian: Il Principe) is a 16th-century political treatise by the Italian diplomat and political theorist Niccolò Machiavelli. From correspondence a version appears to have been distributed in 1513, using a Latin title, De Principatibus (Of Principalities). However, the printed version was not published until 1532, five years after Machiavelli's death. This was done with the permission of the Medici pope Clement VII, but "long before then, ...more
I don't know how come I never reviewed this one but recently I was visiting this friend of mine in south India, Pramod (yes, the one from Goodreads), when he showed me this not-so-popular smaller piece, allegedly written by the author in his last days, 'Le Gente' and never published - for common people about how they can succeed in social life using diplomacy.
There were only twenty copies of same written in 19th century, of which Pramod's was one. Since he is a sort of book-worshipper, he won't ...more
No happiness. No warm and fuzzy pats on the back. Definitely no hugs. No words of encouragement. Definitely nothing about being nice.
Being nice, in politics, in war, in struggles for power, often ends with one person winning and the other person being in prison, disgraced, exiled, or dead.
That was the context in which Machiavelli wrote this book. Italy at the time was a collection of warring states, not united. On ...more
Plenty of good lessons here for a politician, but adaptable by anyone if you don't mind being thought evil by your nearest and dearest. And I don't.
It stands out perhaps on two grounds, one it completely avoids conventional Christian mor ...more
I first read this book when studying economic history at high school in the second half of the last century. I was intrigued by Machiavelli’s advice even though I had l ...more
“Everyone sees what you appear to be, few experience what you really are.” Yes Machiavelli, at least you make some logical sense.
Here is my reasoning about Slytherin and The Prince: Slytherin House, which is known for cunningness, astuteness, ambition, thirst for power, self-preservation ...more
I'm a Tupac fan and having read an article that mentioned that Tupac read this book while in prison and found it profoundly enlightening I decided it was a must read for me, I clicked and its sat on the kindle for almost two years , until now.
I had no idea what this was about, I just assumed I was going to read a fairly raucous fictional story about a Prince.
So you can imagine my shock when I read the opening chapter, i very quickly realised that w ...more
What a simple quote that holds so much influence. The same can be said for the book in general.
Besides the fact that history has always been one of my favourite subjects, as a dual citizen who has spent a lot of time in Italy, I felt like I would benefit from reading this to understand a little ...more
This treatise is mainly concerned on the acquisition and preservation of power. It contains Machiavelli's detailed adv ...more
The Prince is unlike anything I've read before. In many ways it feels like a truly evil book. Stalin, for example, kept an annotated copy of it. It reads as the blueprint for tyrants, despots, and politicians around the world - a guide to how the world of the powerful and the powerless truly works. ...more
it is the common good, and not private gain, that makes the cities great
I like to quote this to friends and play the yes-no game at guessing who said it. Everyone is stunned that it was Machiavelli.
In times when Machiavelli sounds radical, look sharp = /
“Where the willingness is great, the difficulties cannot be great.”
"And in examining their life and deeds it will be seen that they owed nothing to fortune but the opportunity which gave them matter to be shaped into the form that they thought fit; and without that opportunity their powers would have been wasted, and without their powers the opportunity wou ...more
There were definitely moments in this that made me yell "OMG YES" at my tablet, because despite being written in the early 1500s, there's a LOT of stuff in this that's still completely relevant to politics today.
But there was ALSO a lot in here that was incredibly dry and just kind of boring and that I just didn't really give a shit about. So. I think it's one that's important to read at least once. But I ...more
This book, and its agéd source, 'The Art of War', are in his top ten of books. I didn't see in either book the part where the prince falls out off his fucking head trying to achieve all the sociopathic manouvering alluded to.
2 August 2012
Having now read this book three times I sort of wonder how Machiavelli's name came to represent a sort of politics that involved deceit, manipulation, and backstabbing, because for those who claim that this is what the Prince is about have probably read the wrong book, or probably not read the book at all. Somebody even suggested that The Prince was satire because they could not imagine that anybody would suggest such actions to anybody, especially i ...more
Was Machiavelli being sarcastic? Was he publishing a book on how to rule amorally so as to stir up the peasants and make them revolt? Was he trying to bring rule of law into Italy, by any means necessary, and so sent instructions to the Medici's, hoping that that family's demonstrated ruthlessness would be able curb the wayward countr ...more
This is an excellent, highly readable modern version with contextualising introduction, and the translator's note is quite fascinating for translation geeks.
It almost makes me want to take back a previous opinion, that many of Parks’ media articles are overrated - but rather this is a different type of work. He's evidently a very good translator who pays meticulous attention both to ori ...more
A wonderful book really, in an Islamic state in the Middle Ages there was a kind of literature to advise the princes and kings, but he did not like (Prince) in any case it was necessary for those who have decided to write in this genre of literature that take into account the terms of reference of religion and ethics was not allow to them for example justify the betrayal of promises in an ...more
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