The thoughts and methods of NiccolÃ² Machiavelli and Jean-Jacques Rousseau are so different, but can be compared in some ways. Their similarities are small in comparison to their differences. Their differences are so opposite that in some cases they can cause controversy when they are looked upon in more detail.
Part of Rousseauâ€™s method is based on family. The father is the leader of the family and everyone in the family abides by his rules. This relates to political association where as the father is the ruler and the people are his children. This method can be brought back to immediate family in the instance where children remain bound to their father as long as it is needed for them to begin living basically on their own. Once a man becomes old enough to understand logic and reason, he becomes his own master. The only difference between family and political association, Rousseau states, â€œ whereas in the family the fatherâ€™s love for his children is sufficient reward to him for the care he has lavished on them, in the State, the pleasure of commanding others takes its place, since the ruler is not in a relation
of love to his peopleâ€ (58). The â€œSocial Contractâ€ is another key point in Rousseauâ€™s method. Itâ€™s an agreement of individuals where they all have the same rights and
gives each individual the complete ownership of what belongs to him/her. Something they will be losing is the temptation to steal or commit crimes. In modern times these are actual laws that are written on paper, but the â€œSocial Contractâ€ is what Rousseau would most likely call common sense. The rules of the â€œSocial Contractâ€ were more along the lines of moral, instead of law as it is today. People just followed it because it was sort of respectful to everyone else in the community.
Machiavelliâ€™s method is based on the qualities of a prince. He prais