The social ideal society is one where autonomy, justice, tranquility and humanity exist. It has morals and values that guide the society and everyone is happy and has the required human living conditions. Different philosophers have expressed different opinions of their views about an ideal society.
Thomas More, expresses the utopian view, which is a description depicting a fictional island civilization; its religious, social and political way of life. “Moore used the utopian society to contrast between the imaginary or unusual political ideas and the chaotic politics of his own day as a platform from which he could discuss Europe’s social issues” (as cited in wayne 124)
Literally the word utopia means good and the kind of society Moore describes as desirable but unreachable. Ashkenazi (159) notes that “In this society there is no private ownership of property with goods being stored in a warehouse where people request for them.”
Agriculture is the form of production which everyone must engage in, besides that, each person is taught a specific trade which includes, processing wool, stones man, blacksmith or a carpenter. The kind of clothes worn is uniform and never changes. After work they dine together in halls then have an hour for recreation in the gardens or in the dining halls.
The utopian society is a wellbeing state with open hospitals, allows mercy killings, priests marry, divorce is allowed, premarital sex is punished by a life celibacy and dependence. There are several religions such as moon worshipers, sun worshippers, planet and ancestor worshippers.
“By modern standards the society does not give equity to women since they are restricted to the household tasks , are subjects to their husbands, whereas only widowed women can be priests and wives are supposed to confess their sins to the husbands once a month.” I do not agree to the all issues mentioned by More but also there are some issues that I would concur that the current governments would establish (Ashkenazi, 59).
In Niccolo Machiavelli’s book “The prince,” he looks at the acquirement, continuation and use of political supremacy in the western world. This book shows prowess in ruling and how a prince may gain power, which is through force rather than rule of law. Machiavelli says that a state should have strong military forces to attack other territories or for its defense. A prince should be able to create a strong army that can endure an extended siege.
He disagrees on the use of mercenaries because they are undisciplined, cowardly, not loyal and are only after money. He also cautions against use of auxiliary army borrowed from a friend because they are cohesive and influenced by good leaders who may turn against the prince.
A prince should be intelligent, should acquire wisdom by studying the battles of previous great battle men and this way he will be able to bring reforms to his people since people are resistant to change. “The prince should posses good qualities but should not be concerned in them instead should concentrate on ethics that matter and are beneficial to him in dealing with the state.” Berlin (256) noted.
A prince should be generous to his subjects but should be careful not lose appreciation over it. He should be cost-effective and more willing to be presumed as a saver rather than a bighearted person. He believes a prince must be able to command authority from his subjects but not to the point of them hating him (Berlin, 45).
Machiavelli in several ways is seen to contradict himself about several issues, the moral character of a prince for example, he out ways virtue in times of need but still believes a price should be the same at all times. In many ways, he persuades integrity but still shuns obsequiousness, he promotes cruelty if it justifies the end and he insists that this way, religion and political affairs are alienated.
Wayne, (226) said that “Machiavelli was a pragmatist alarmed by how he wanted things to be, not how they could be if the humanity was ideal.” He advocated for moral virtue and Christianity only when it was necessary otherwise he sanctioned for cold blood deception and betrayal even if it meant destruction of the state to create an ideal one.
The book was written by Ursula Kroeber Guin an American writer. Her previous works are sociological, revolutionary, feminist and mental. Guin (90) wrote that “Ones Who Walk Away” and also “From Omelas”’, a utopian science fiction set in a fictional universe the city of Omelas, it is one of the short stories in her collection “The Wind Twelve Quarters” which won the Hugo awards in 1974.”
Guin ( 56) also says that “In this book she tells of a community that is beautiful, happy and prosperous but only exists somewhere within and as long as a child is kept in appalling physical and psychological neglected conditions.”
It is a critique of American life whereby the society is smart, cultured and everything about them is pleasing except for the secret of the city which involves the suffering of a child. The people are told of the secret in the coming age and they all are shocked, disgusted as some walk away seeming to know where they are going but no one else seems to know; they walked away from the Omelas.
I prefer the Machiavelli view of an ideal city although it has imperfections just like the rest. His view of a society is achievable although it takes a revolution to do so while the rest are unreachable considering human’s selfish nature.
Ashkenazi, Abraham. The prince, Niccolo Machiavelli: analytic notes and reviews. New York, NY: American R.D.M. Corporation, 1966. Print.
Guin Ursula. The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas. New York, NY: Cengage Learning, 1975. Print.
Wayne, Rebhorn. Utopia. New York, NY: Barnes & Noble Classics, 2005.Print.