Machiavelli’s Prince, Adolph Hitler, and Charles V

Political Science / April 23, 2015 / No Comments /
An evaluation of some of the principles stated in “The Prince”, and their relation to two leaders of the past: Charles V of the Holy Roman Empire, and Adolf Hitler.

This detailed paper provides history on Machiavelli, Hitler, and Charles V. Hitler and Charles V are held to five of Machiavelli?s core principles, and for each are measured by how Machiavellian their acts were. Further comparisons are drawn between the teachings of Locke and Rousseau. Machiavelli set forth ideas on how a leader should rule, this paper addresses whether or not leaders should follow his advice.
Through the ages, Machiavelli has been remembered in mostly a negative sense. His book, The Prince, has many controversial opinions in it about how a leader should rule, and it has even been called a book inspired by the devil. The Prince is considered by many to be the Bible of realpolitik, a belief that politics is based on practical and material factors rather than on theoretical or ethical objectives. This paper will evaluate some of the principles stated in The Prince, and their relation to two leaders of the past: Charles V of the Holy Roman Empire, and Adolf Hitler. Charles V lived at a time of change, during the pinnacle of the Protestant Reformation. He spent his life trying to deal with this problem, before ultimately reaching a conclusion shortly before his death. Adolf Hitler is perhaps the most well-known ruler in history. He was a German Dictator whose need for power and glory spawned World War II. He is remembered not only for his excellent leadership skills, but also for the atrocities he committed against his fellow man during the Holocaust. By comparing these leaders to the Prince, one can assess to what degree they are Machiavellian.


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