Examine the impact of Machiavellian Theory in society today.

Expert Answers
Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The political realm is one in which Machiavellian theory is shown to have some of its greatest impact on society today.  Political leaders are Machiavellian creatures.  They examine how their decisions and actions will be perceived by the public.  The use of focus testing, political advisers, polling data, and public relations experts helps to confirm this.  From a political standpoint, Machiavellian theory is concerned with the perception of the ruler.  Even if one puts aside all else, the basic notion of Machiavellian theory and ethics is to calculate how one's actions will be perceived.  The ability to harness positive perceptions as adding to one's larger narrative is of vital importance to the political ruler.  Machiavellian theory is evident in this aspect of self.  Modern political machinery does not operate without examining how the ruler's actions will be perceived. 

At the same time, the will to do something ensuring political leadership is not interrupted is another part of Machiavellian theory.  Machiavelli makes it clear that political will consists of doing something that one might not like to do.  Yet, in being essential for political survival and political success, one must do what has to be done.  The modern political setting is one where this tale of survival is repeated often.  For the modern political setting, Machiavellian notions of survival are evident.  In these ways, one can see how the presence of Machiavellian theory is a part of the modern political landscape.