Machiavelli's Secret

The Soul of the Statesman

Raymond Angelo Belliotti
eISBN-13: 9781438457222

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The political statesman, Machiavelli tells us, must love his country more than his own soul. Political leaders must often transgress clear moral principles, using means that are typically wrong, even horrifying. What sort of inner life does a leader who "uses evil well" experience and endure? The conventional view held by most scholars is that a Machiavellian statesman lacks any "inwardness" because Machiavelli did not delve into the state of mind one might find in a politician with "dirty hands." While such a leader would bask in his glory, the argument goes, we can only wonder at the condition of the soul they have presumably risked in discharging their duties. In Machiavelli's Secret, Raymond Angelo Belliotti uncovers a range of clues in Machiavelli's writings that, when pieced together, reveal that the Machiavellian hero most certainly has "inwardness" and is surely deeply affected by the evil means he must sometimes employ. Belliotti not only reveals the nature of this internal condition, but also provides a springboard for the possibility of Machiavelli's ideal statesman.

ISBNs 9781438457215, 1438457227, 9781438457222
Language English