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The Prince
Cover of The Prince
The Prince
Summary
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As a young Florentine envoy to the courts of France and the Italian principalities, Niccoló Machiavelli (1469-1527) was able to observe firsthand the lives of people strongly united under one powerful ruler. His fascination with that political rarity and his intense desire to see the Medici family assume a similar role in Italy provided the foundation for his "primer for princes." In this classic guide to acquiring and maintaining political power, Machiavelli used a rational approach to advise prospective rulers, developing logical arguments and alternatives for a number of potential problems, among them governing hereditary monarchies, dealing with colonies and the treatment of conquered peoples. Refreshing in its directness, yet often disturbing in its cold practicality, The Prince sets down a frighteningly pragmatic formula for political fortune. Starkly relevant to the political upheavals of the 20th century, this calculating prescription for power remains today, nearly 500 years after it was written, a timely and startling lesson in the practice of autocratic rule that continues to be much read and studied by students, scholars and general readers as well.

As a young Florentine envoy to the courts of France and the Italian principalities, Niccoló Machiavelli (1469-1527) was able to observe firsthand the lives of people strongly united under one powerful ruler. His fascination with that political rarity and his intense desire to see the Medici family assume a similar role in Italy provided the foundation for his "primer for princes." In this classic guide to acquiring and maintaining political power, Machiavelli used a rational approach to advise prospective rulers, developing logical arguments and alternatives for a number of potential problems, among them governing hereditary monarchies, dealing with colonies and the treatment of conquered peoples. Refreshing in its directness, yet often disturbing in its cold practicality, The Prince sets down a frighteningly pragmatic formula for political fortune. Starkly relevant to the political upheavals of the 20th century, this calculating prescription for power remains today, nearly 500 years after it was written, a timely and startling lesson in the practice of autocratic rule that continues to be much read and studied by students, scholars and general readers as well.

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  • Lexile:
    1350
  • Interest Level:
  • Text Difficulty:
    11 - 12

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  • AudioFile Magazine THE PRINCE is a deeply informed manual of strategy and statesmanship from the Renaissance. Machiavelli's advice for rulers is so informed by real politick that it still shocks readers even today. However, while Rider Strong's delivery is always clear and easy to follow, it is so matter-of-fact that this shock may be minimized. In other words, the production lacks drama. When Machiavelli writes of the need to kill this faction or that, for example, Strong's delivery is too calm for such explosive subject matter. As a result, this unabridged recording is more useful for those already familiar with Machiavelli's classic work than for those new to the text. G.T.B. (c) AudioFile 2008, Portland, Maine
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    All copies of this title, including those transferred to portable devices and other media, must be deleted/destroyed at the end of the lending period.

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Niccolo Machiavelli
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