IB Language and Literature
Casino Royale is the 21st installment of the popular James Bond film series released in 2006, directed by Martin Campbell, and starring Daniel Craig as 007 for the first time. This film sets at the beginning of Bond’s espionage career having recently earned his license to kill. On the other hand, The Prince is a political treatise by the Italian philosopher and historian Niccolò Machiavelli in 1513. The Prince is sometimes claimed to be one of the earliest works of modern political philosophy. Chapter 17 of the book discusses the method leaders should govern as well as the type of cognition leaders should imprint in their subjects giving examples including Hannibal and Scipio. The following commentary will analyze, compare, and contrast both the film Casino Royale and the book The Prince.
As the major theme of chapter 17 of The Prince, the chapter discusses whether rulers should govern with clemency or with cruelty, and whether it is better to be loved or to be feared. Ultimately, Machiavelli concludes that it is necessary for the subjects to fear their rulers in order to promote order and obedience. Thus rulers should govern their subjects with cruelty for the well being of the state. The reason Machiavelli gives is that benevolence and tolerance will condone the subjects governed leading to crime and disorder. At times of crisis loyalty will be forgotten, as love is only an obligation. On the other hand, at critical times, fear will persist, as it is a feeling for survival. As a result, fear is the force that can keep the subjects’ submission and therefore rulers need to be feared in order to keep the state united and under jurisdiction. However as Machiavelli stated further, do not let the fear of the subjects transform into hatred as this would do the ruler no good.
This chapter of the book is written a form in which the author poses the question and addresses both sides of the response with examples producing a very persuasive argument. Supposition is also used extensively in the text for example: “…general of men, that they are ungrateful, fickle, false, cowardly, covetous, and as long as you succeed they are yours entirely; they will offer you their blood, property, life and children, as is said above, when the need is far distant; but when it approaches they turn against you.” These techniques allows the readers to reconsider commonly perceived desirable values, and also allowing them to reconsider these values in a different perspective as well as in a broader context. The purpose of this chapter is clearly to advocate the necessity for rulers to govern harshly and to persuade people with authority to preside over their subjects with a deterrent attitude for the benefit of the bigger picture.
The second piece of document of the commentary is a poster of the James Bond film Casino Royale. Despite in the form of a poster, the objects in the image are placed deliberately to convey a message. Together the expression on Bond’s face, the stack of chips, the pistol, and the lighting come together to tell a very compelling story. This is achieved through