Machiavelli's Children: Leaders and Their Legacies in Italy and Japan by Richard J. SamuelsMachiavelli's Children: Leaders and Their Legacies in Italy and Japan by Richard J. Samuels

Machiavelli's Children: Leaders and Their Legacies in Italy and Japan

byRichard J. Samuels

Paperback | May 19, 2005

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Two late-developing nations, Japan and Italy, similarly obsessed with achieving modernity and with joining the ranks of the great powers, have traveled parallel courses with very different national identities. In this audacious book about leadership and historical choices, Richard J. Samuels emphasizes the role of human ingenuity in political change. He draws on interviews and archival research in a fascinating series of paired biographies of political and business leaders from Italy and Japan.

Beginning with the founding of modern nation-states after the Meiji Restoration and the Risorgimento, Samuels traces the developmental dynamic in both countries through the failure of early liberalism, the coming of fascism, imperial adventures, defeat in wartime, and reconstruction as American allies. Highlights of Machiavelli's Children include new accounts of the making of postwar Japanese politics—using American money and Manchukuo connections—and of the collapse of Italian political parties in the Clean Hands (Mani Pulite) scandal.

The author also tells the more recent stories of Umberto Bossi's regional experiment, the Lega Nord, the different choices made by Italian and Japanese communist party leaders after the collapse of the USSR, and the leadership of Silvio Berlusconi and Ishihara Shintar on the contemporary right in each country.

Richard J. Samuels is Ford International Professor of Political Science and Director of the Center for International Studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Title:Machiavelli's Children: Leaders and Their Legacies in Italy and JapanFormat:PaperbackDimensions:480 pages, 9.25 × 6.13 × 0.2 inPublished:May 19, 2005Publisher:Cornell University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0801489822

ISBN - 13:9780801489822

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Editorial Reviews

"A breathtakingly original and ambitious book, Machiavelli's Children sets a new standard for work in comparative politics, and restores to its proper place the classic question of the role of leaders in political history. The book offers fresh and unexpected insights into the course of both Japanese and Italian history, from the mid-nineteenth century to the present. In moving us away from standard national histories—inevitably mired in 'exceptionalism'—Samuels offers a whole new way to conceive of the paths taken by states in the modern era. This truly rare and exciting piece of political and historical research raises the bar for all future study."—David I. Kertzer, Dupee University Professor of Social Science, Brown University