Hobbes “Leviathan” and Machiavelli’s “The Prince” Analysis

Respond to the following question:

In Hobbes Leviathan, anxiety, uncertainty, and restlessness play a critical role in his formulation of the natural condition of mankind; further they are the dynamics behind the making of the social contract and the construction of political authority.

For Machiavelli the main issue is how to create and sustain power; and then how to find a political environment where violence no longer defines political virtue.

Why then does Hobbes find it so important that the Leviathan or what he calls the mortal God defuse the potential of the passions to create radical political instability?

And why does Machiavelli find it so necessary to argue for a Prince, who uses ethics and violence instrumentally, to end the destruction caused by war and greedy, self-seeking political actors?

And finally which solution to political violence do you find more plausible: Hobbes or Machiavelli?

Use both the readings and the films in your response; use the films and readings as illustration for your arguments. So be selective: and above all: no plot or theory summaries. Construct this question as an argument and feel free to adapt the prompt to issues you want to address.

Instructions: Essays should be 5 pages in length, double spaced. Essays will be due on Tuesday January 9 at 5:PM.

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