Feminist Interpretations of Niccolo Machiavelli (Re-Reading by Maria J. Falco

By Maria J. Falco

Diplomat, bureaucrat, and useful flesh presser, Niccol? Machiavelli served as moment Secretary to the Republic of Florence within the early 16th century and have become the 1st significant political philosopher within the western culture to make a whole holiday with the Aristotelian version of politics as a department of ethics. whereas The Prince is his most renowned paintings, grounding his recognition because the progenitor of "Realpolitik," his many different writings have contributed to a extra complicated and broader picture of the guy and his political idea. hence in recent times Machiavelli has emerge as visible as a republican and a proto-liberal via a few mainstream political theorists, and as an obfuscator of conventional values and ideologies, together with gender roles, by way of feminists and non-feminists alike. The participants to this quantity, grappling with questions on the placement of girls in political society, examine even if Machiavelli used to be really a misogynist and a proto-fascist or in its place a proto-feminist and a democratic republican. one of the subject matters they discover are the consequences of such dichotomies as Fortuna and virt?, the general public and the personal, nature and cause, ends and potential, performance and the typical strong, in addition to the significance of the army to the socialization of electorate, quite ladies, to civic lifestyles, and the social building of gender. a few of the individuals even contemplate the prospect that Machiavelli's method of ethics presents a different perception that feminists, and girls often, may discover to their gain.

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See James Cleugh, The Medici: A Tale of Fifteen Generations (New York: Doubleday, 1975), 275; and Felix Gilbert, Machiavelli and Guicciardini: Politics and History in Sixteenth-Century Florence (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1965), 274. 60. Hale, Machiavelli and Renaissance Italy, 175. 61. Quoted in Villari, Life and Times of Savonarola, 2:508. 62. Letter to Francesco Vettori (April 16, 1527), in The Letters of Machiavelli, 249. See also Atkinson and Sices, Machiavelli and His Friends, 416; and Chabod, Machiavelli and the Renaissance, 141, who instructs us that the term Machiavelli actually used was patria.

8. See the sketch by Leonardo da Vinci of the hanging of one of the conspirators in de Grazia, Machiavelli in Hell, 12. For a recent account of the conspiracy, see Lauro Martines, April Blood: Florence and the Plot against the Medici (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003). Martines writes that one of the conspirators was a Girolamo Machiavelli from the more prominent branch of the family (44–45). 9. Ridolfi writes that Machiavelli implied that Savonarola was a ‘‘fraud’’ and a ‘‘liar’’ when he wrote in a letter to Ricciardo Becchi two months before the friar’s execution that ‘‘he acts in accordance with the times and colors his lies accordingly’’ (Life of Niccolo` Machiavelli, 9).

Knopf, 1993. ———. The Battle for God. New York: Ballantine Books, 2000. , and David Sices, ed. and trans. Machiavelli and His Friends: Their Personal Correspondence. DeKalb: Northern Illinois University Press, 1996. ———. ’’ DeKalb: Northern Illinois University Press, 2002. Baron, Hans. The Crisis of the Early Italian Renaissance. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1966. 10651$ INTR 05-25-04 08:12:00 PS Introduction 35 Berlin, Isaiah. Against the Current: Essays in the History of Ideas. New York: Penguin Books, 1979.

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