Miles Unger new bio on Machiavelli, whose name is an eponym for the political stratagem on how to acquire and retain power without compunction to scruples or conscience, paints Niccolo Machiavelli aesthetically with broad strokes as the father of political science; diplomat, with an astute appreciation of human nature–a predecessor of Freud, if you will–and a poet and an author; specifically, creator of La Mandragola, a renowned comedy of the Italian Renaissance. A contemporary and intimate to the renaissance polymaths: Leonardo and Michelangelo; the era’s brilliant innovators. As the patriarch of political sci he sired two opuses: The Prince and The Discourses, where the former was modeled after the notorious Cesare Borgia, the son of Pope Alexander VI, violent career, and the latter, an analysis of the workings of the civil state.
As a product of his environment, Machiavelli’s, The Prince, was a reflection of revolutionary, tumultuous times, where geniuses and tyrants traipsed the landscapes: the manuscript was his manifestations of a pragmatic guide to aspiring politicians that is based on the world as it is, not as a should be. As an atheist, he readily dismissed the moral yard stick to facilitate decisive political and managerial direction; decisions were structured on the foundation of the natural world and the corruptible and flawed human nature