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Grant number: FT-13765-78

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Peter S. Donaldson
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge, MA 02139-4307)

Machiavellism and Mystery of State

To challenge the common notion that Machiavelli's influence was a straightforwardly secularizing one, and to suggest that in politics (as in science) modern, secular, scientific tendencies often develop in the closest relation to the most arcane and magical strands of the received tradition. PI will make a series of case studies of Machiavelli's influence in 16th and 17th century English and Continental thought and letters, focusing on ways in which the ancient notion of mystery of state or arcana imperii was revived in efforts to absorb, or come to terms with, Machiavelli.

Project fields:
Renaissance Studies

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$2,500 (approved)
$2,500 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/1978 – 9/30/1978