The Prince is an interesting treatise, and I was really glad to have read it. So far, it is quite independent from all the other pieces of literature we have read, as it is non-fiction in the form of a didactic. In this text, the author, Niccolo Machiavelli, outlines methods that a prince should take in governing his populace. He describes the consequences of failing to do so, raises some great examples (Hannibal, etc.) to support his notions, and begins the piece with an introduction (essentially chapters 1 and 2), explaining the scope of the book, and concluding it. Essentially an essay.
His ideas that one must strike fear to the people below him is one that has been employed by many rulers, before and after him. Although I do find it quite unfair that people credit any “Prince-esque” ruler post-Machiavelli to derive inspiration from him, as he did not invent the concepts of things such as love versus fear, strength in unity, faithful representation, etc. He simply outlines them in his book, which at the time would have sounded much more like political commentary rather than a creation of something brand new, akin to the works of Marx… or something like that.
Nonetheless, it is a great piece of literature, and it will continue to be timeless as the points brought up are not really refutable. What I mean by that, is that they are passable ways to control a populace, and this has been proven by centuries of rule before and after the release of The Prince. We have modern day Machiavellis everywhere, Kissinger, Obama, Kennedy, you name it. And their legacies alone will live to inspire future politicians until the end of time.
Overall, I really enjoyed reading The Prince. It really tied into our reading of The Republic and Machiavelli raises some great, interesting points about dictatorships throughout.