This assignment is your opportunity to engage closely with the texts covered in this course. You are expected to write responses in the manner of a well-constructed argumentative essay, by responding to one of the three choices listed below. In order to succeed, you must consistently support your arguments and interpretive claims with textual evidence throughout your paper. Secondary sources are not permitted. Please note, this is not an opinion piece. Your aim is to persuade the reader by evaluating the arguments and giving proof (i.e. making reference to or quoting the text directly) that your interpretation and insights in response to the text are correct.

For further guidance, please see the rubric on page 2. 

Word Requirement: 1100-1300 words, please don’t go under or over this range. 

Format: Times New Roman, 12pts, Double Spaced

Citation System: Chicago Style, Notes and Bibliography format. For Plato/Aristotle, please use the Stephanus notation, and for Aristotle the Bekker numbers (these are the numbers on the side of the text), and for the other authors make sure to include the chapter of the quote referenced.  File Type: Please submit in Word Format ONLY. Do not submit any other kinds of files. 


How does Machiavelli’s account of virtue in The Prince compare to one of the classical thinkers we have studied? Why does Machiavelli think his account of virtue is superior to the ones offered by past philosophers? How might Plato, Aristotle, or Confucius respond to Machiavelli’s account of virtue? Which account is more convincing to you, and why? 


Here is a general rubric, explaining what constitutes stronger and softer responses in undergraduate essay assignments. However, I won’t be evaluating your work algorithmically. As Plato shows us throughout Republic, justice demands the exercise of our prudential judgment. Meaning, your response could be imperfect in nearly all the categories, but if it’s original, wellsupported, demonstrates evidence that you grappled with the text, and provokes dialectical response, it may still justly merit an “A”.

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