ISSN: 2657-800X
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2019, t. 2, nr 2 (4), poz. 24
2019, Vol 2, No 2 (4), item. 24
2019-12-29
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Krystyna Potapenkoschool

The limits of the principle “the end justifies the means” in the Niccolo Machiavelli’s philosophy of power

The article analyzes the problem of contemporary understanding of Machiavellianism in the context of Machiavelli’s real views. It presents the boundaries of the principle “the end justifies the means” which include the public interest, selecting the lesser evil, and the justified use of immoral means during the war. Much of the discussion is devoted to an analysis of the common good as a main goal for Machiavelli himself. Based on the work of Machiavelli, an image of the ruler aiming to unify Italy is reconstructed. The findings are then referred to the views from the era as well as to contemporary realities, also by indicating examples of possible interpretations of Machiavellianism today.

Keywords: Machiavelli, prince, state, Machiavellianism, morality

The article is published in Polish