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2023 | OriginalPaper | Chapter

Class Warfare in Guicciardini’s Considerations on Machiavelli: Alibis, Evasions, and Counter-Provocations

Author : John P. McCormick

Published in: Republicanism and Democracy

Publisher: Springer International Publishing

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Abstract

This paper examines Francesco Guicciardini’s various efforts to engage, evade, or protest Machiavelli’s arguments concerning social class, the constitution of liberty, and preferable forms of tyranny in his Considerations on Machiavelli’s Discourses (1530) (Guicciardini in The sweetness of power: Machiavelli’s discourses and Guicciardini’s considerations, Northern Illinois University Press, 2002, hereafter C) (Emendations to the translation are based on Guicciardini [Considerazioni intorno ai discorsi del Machiavelli. In Machiavelli, Discorsi, Einaudi, 1997]). As a prominent Florentine ottimato and a dutiful servant of Medici princes, Guicciardini might be fully expected to resist or refute Machiavelli’s frequent endorsements of the moral, cognitive, and even pragmatic superiority of peoples over nobilities and princes. Additionally, Guicciardini’s anti-popular orientation may have been inflamed at the time that he wrote the Considerations since he considered himself to be the potential victim of a vindictive, newly restored governo popolare in Florence. Aristocratic prejudices—inherent or circumstantial—aside, I hope to highlight the following: The manner in which Guicciardini disagrees with Machiavelli on class politics, republican institutions, and types of tyranny is just as illuminating as the positions he takes and the reasons he provides for doing so.

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Literature
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Metadata
Title
Class Warfare in Guicciardini’s Considerations on Machiavelli: Alibis, Evasions, and Counter-Provocations
Author
John P. McCormick
Copyright Year
2023
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-15780-6_2