Niccolo Machiavelli broke with the classical tradition as well, in focusing on power and self-interest as unavoidable aspects of political governance. Talk about what it meant for Machiavelli to take power as the central reality of political theory (and include in your answer at least a brief mention of how Machiavelli conceived of the role of violence in power politics).
Describe also how Machiavelli differed from Plato and Aristotle in conceiving of government as being a matter of placating the self-interested desires of agents, rather than being a matter of transforming those self-interested desires into more commendable character states. Use examples as necessary. Finally, interact critically with Machiavelli and state whether you agree or disagree with his assertions about the bankruptcy of ideal theory and the importance of turning to the actual conduct of politics.
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