Issue 3

International Journal of Political Science

ISSN: 2228-6217

Director-in-Chief:

Hassan Abniki, PhD., Islamic Azad University, South Tehran Branch

Editor in Chief:

Abolghasem Taheri, PhD., Allameh Tabatabaei University

Executive Manager:

Mohammad Javad Mosanejad, PhD. Student, Allameh Tabatabaee University

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Virtue in Machiavelli’s Political Thought

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Abstract:

The interpretability of Machiavelli’s political thought relates, in the most part, to the concept of virtue and its dimensions. In Western thought, this concept has had continuity and has reached the Renais-sance and Machiavelli’s times. In the Roman and Medieval tradition, philosophical, verbal, religious and even literary and historical approaches were dominant in the clarification and explanation of this concept. However, with Machiavelli, we witness a break in the sense and status of this concept. By confining the concept of virtue in the realm of politics and releasing it from the bounds of the ancient thought, Machia-velli could delineate a novel but supported view backed by historical evidence and kingship experiences, and provide the prince and government with new operational possibilities. The present paper investigates the process of transformation and formation of the concept of virtue by Machiavelli based on a conceptual framework taken from his and his commentators’ works. The results reveal that the new concept of virtue has a qualitative and a quantitative dimension each with certain aspects. Successful political act is actual-ized through simultaneous consideration of both dimensions of virtue.

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