Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Reading Leo StraussPolitics, Philosophy, Judaism$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Steven B. Smith

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780226764023

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226763903.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 04 July 2022

Tyranny Ancient and Modern

Tyranny Ancient and Modern

Chapter:
(p.131) Chapter Six Tyranny Ancient and Modern
Source:
Reading Leo Strauss
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226763903.003.0007

Leo Strauss's On Tyranny was not only his first book written in English but also his first book written in the United States. The specific difference between ancient and modern tyranny was first highlighted by Machiavelli. On Tyranny is the first work where Strauss attributes to Machiavelli this “epoch-making change” in orientation, a change that would only be fully explored a decade later in his Thoughts on Machiavelli. Strauss identifies Machiavelli as the fons et origo of modernity, out of which all the later developments in the social sciences have arisen. His reference here to “sacred restraints” on action is as close as he gets in On Tyranny to offering something like a doctrine of natural right. Strauss's reference to what every “well-bred child” knows suggests the existence of certain pretheoretical or prephilosophical moral rules of the sort that one should not give bad examples to others or do base things for the sake of good consequences.

Keywords:   Tyranny, Leo Strauss, Machiavelli, pretheoretical moral rules, prephilosophical moral rules

Chicago Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.