By Mark Jurdjevic
Like many population of booming metropolises, Machiavelli alternated among love and hate for his local urban. He frequently wrote scathing feedback approximately Florentine political myopia, corruption, and servitude, but additionally wrote approximately Florence with satisfaction, patriotism, and assured wish of higher instances. regardless of the alternating tones of sarcasm and depression he used to explain Florentine affairs, Machiavelli supplied a stubbornly continual feel that his urban had all of the fabrics and strength valuable for a wholesale, successful, and epochal political renewal. As he memorably placed it, Florence was once "truly a good and wretched city."
Mark Jurdjevic makes a speciality of the Florentine measurement of Machiavelli's political suggestion, revealing new elements of his republican convictions. via The Prince, Discourses, correspondence, and, so much considerably, Florentine Histories, Jurdjevic examines Machiavelli's political profession and relationships to the republic and the Medici. He indicates that major and as but unrecognized points of Machiavelli's political idea have been notably Florentine in notion, content material, and goal. From a brand new viewpoint and armed with new arguments, a very good and Wretched City reengages the venerable debate approximately Machiavelli's courting to Renaissance republicanism. Dispelling the parable that Florentine politics provided Machiavelli purely unfavourable classes, Jurdjevic argues that his contempt for the city's shortcomings used to be an immediate functionality of his substantial estimation of its unrealized political potential.
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Additional resources for A great and wretched city : promise and failure in Machiavelli's Florentine political thought
64 Brown went on to show the impact of “the tough Savonarola” on the development of Machiavelli’s political thought. 65 Brown illuminated the way specific themes in Savonarola’s selfpresentation as a reformer in the Mosaic mold—particularly his rhetoric on arms, severe justice, prophecy, and the necessity of divine approval for new laws— affected the general development of Machiavelli’s political thought. But there are yet more precise links between the Savonarolan example, the question of force, and Machiavelli’s vocabulary in the Discourses that suggest his indebtedness to Savonarola.
But if Weinstein’s fi rst contention is correct and Machiavelli did so, the second contention—that Machiavelli was at the same time signalling a critique of prophetic politics— seems strained at best because it requires him to speak in a language whose assumptions he rejected. Chapter 26 urged the Medici to introduce new institutions that would enable them to lead a unified pan-Italian army to expel the French and Spanish forces plaguing the peninsula. The chapter should thus be interpreted in tandem with the sixth chapter that discussed institutional innovation and the introduction of new customs.
32 Machiavelli analyzed Roman religion in terms of its political application and function, just as he analyzed Savonarola’s sermons in the Becchi letter roughly a decade earlier. Throughout his political works, Machiavelli was fascinated by religion as a political phenomenon and always thought about its impact on the political arena. For this reason, it is awkward to conclude, as Sasso, Martelli, and others have done, that Machiavelli’s political reading of Savonarola’s sermons constituted an indictment of Savonarola’s piety.