This is a new translation which was reviewed on BBC Radio 4 as the Book of the Week. The Great and the not so Good fought to review it. It was wrenched out of my hands recently by a famous Hollywood film producer, who was still looking for someone who could turn it into a decent film script. "How do you know about this"? she asked accusingly. A lover of BBC Channel 4, she had yet to tune into BBC Radio 4.
Machiavelli was commander of a mercenary army, hired by the Medicci Family, to take Pisa back. Mission accomplished he was subsequently imprisoned because as he posed too much of threat, to his masters. He decided to decant a lifetimes study of how great men come to and remain in power; as a gift. Written in a charming voice, not too ingratiating voice, the big plonker rejected it. Machiavelli was too clever by half; and the two hounds he had been given for hunting were far more fun.
Others saw the merit in it, and fortunately preserved it for us. Possibly the first self help book ever written, and if the Vatican had had its way, the last.
Psychopathic or extreme pragmatist, you decide about Machiavelli. He casually sizes up principalities for acquisition, like an asset stripper. He offers advice to both potential princes and their subjects. Written about five hundred years ago, it is astonishingly still true of life today. Is God up top pouring olive oil down the slope, while we struggle to push polenta up hill?
Read The Prince and your struggle with adversity, will be simplified.
This is a must for every bookcase and definitely one to read if you want to try and understand politics. You can then see what they are trying to do whether it is the spin era of Blairism or those regimes further afield. Well after all they have read the book and .................... well you know the rest!
Machiavelli sees the world through eyes of an individual with a clear understanding of the underlying characteristics of humans and the politics we employ to achieve our objectives. he says it, we're all thinking it.