Blood Sucking Creatures and …Hair?

1. Granted that Machiavelli’s own historical context is remote, how far does his pattern of contrasts between political ideals and concrete realities apply today?

This is quite difficult for me because I don’t particularly follow any politics…ever. I’m sorry, but I am a go with the flow type of person. And while I am ashamed…I don’t vote. Ever. I’m military and have been all of my life so I have no state and even if the slightest chance that I did decide to vote and the people I wanted were elected…1) they wouldn’t accomplish everything they said they were   going to or/and 2) I’ll be moving in a year or two to a state or maybe outside the country to a place with new governing that won’t have anything to do with anything I previously voted for. I’m sour in that way I suppose.

But I also feel like that leads me into my next thought. I haven’t followed any election since my US Government class in high school when (muffles voice) was being elected and I had to do a report on it. But … he didn’t do all of the things he said he would. I don’t even know if he tried after he was elected all I know is I got an A on the report. So I am not sure if Machiavelli’s ideals relate exactly to say the voting that just happened, but I’ll try to make some connections as best as I can. Machiavelli described his perfect prince (given we are in to the whole President, Senator type thing) he says they can’t expect the prince to be perfect, but we expect ours to be. OH! I guess I did hear about Obama not saluting after that blew up on the news. The prince had to uphold standards like faithfulness, generosity and caring. I completely agree, whomever is in charge should be all of these things.

However, he then follows up with that no one of course could meet all of these standards, but he describes what he thinks to be the perfect prince. He wants a kind, loving, religious prince. Which is great, but once again…won’t happen or at least we won’t know. I think that the Prince would be more open…our government I feel is more secretive and let’s people know only what they want them to know. Our president could be kind, loving and religious…but we don’t know that.

2. Sister Juana de la Cruz cuts off her hair to force herself to learn more quickly, although she knows that among young women, “the natural adornment of one’s hair is held in such high esteem.’ Finally, she enters the convent (where woman had their heads shorn). What other works have you read that emphasize the importance of a woman’s hair? Why does it seem to have so much symbolic value in such a range of cultures and times?

The work that comes to mind is a picture of the Disney princesses undergoing chemotherapy. Several little girls, such as the make up guru, Taela before she passed away lost their hair during treatment and a lot of them are really saddened by it.

bald+princesses

A lot of cultures use hair as an ultimate form of beauty. From Native Americans using it to depict sadness to using it in head dresses to Nazi soldiers stripping Jews of it and taking it for stuffing or mattresses. We’re taught that long, luxurious hair is required to be feminine.

3. Bear in mind that the Aztec warrior’s highest duty is to bring home live captives for sacrifice. Give the Song for Admonishing a careful reading and decide–without researching the entire Cantares Mexicanos–what possible meaning might be assigned to the figurative terms “flower’ and “song.’

The warriors were to bring captives back home to sacrifice, that was their top priority. I think the song was prayer to their gods while they did their traditional sacrifices. They not only were speaking of their hope for their past warriors but for their future ones. The warriors were their flowers, they prayed for their honor, their safety and prosperity.

5 thoughts on “Blood Sucking Creatures and …Hair?

  1. bdfleagle

    Sharisse,
    I think your ‘state’ could easily be thought of as our nation as a whole. As a soldier, born to a soldier, your home has been the military and the military’s home is our nation. It is our nation that you serve, no particular state. So the “Prince” is our national government. But Machiavelli’s state is like a nation, though collectively they were called by the name Italy. He longs for their unity and the leader he thinks would be capable of holding such unification together.

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  2. Jared

    I know that government and politics can be a little unsettling and there are many politicians that people do not feel they can trust. Also being a member of military, I find it hard to ignore the politics and decisions being made that will directly affect my family and I. I do admire the fact that you do not vote, when you do not know who or what you are voting on.

    Good points on the warrior and prayer links to the imagery used in the Aztec poetry. I honestly had not though about prayers, but it does make sense in the first few lines of poem. Warriors also fits into many depictions and the idea that they are praying for future warriors also makes a lot of sense. I had trouble linking any words that fit every situation, but overall I think you made some fine points.

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  3. Victoria Adams

    I think that the emphasis on have long luxurious hair is very prevalent in our society. Barbie dolls, movies (disney princess movies), magazines, etc. I think it becomes the stereotype for woman so I can see how being stripped of it could be humiliating?

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  4. sxkristoffersen

    Goof point about how the Nazi’s stripped the Jewish Women of their hair. In that case, it seems the purpose was of demoralizing, and an attempt at stripping the beauty from females of the Jewish culture. I agree it was strange how Machiavelli said his idea was impossible, which is another reason I feel he may have wrote The Prince as partially ironic rhetoric.

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  5. Caitlin

    Love what you wrote for the second question. All I could think of was a funny meme on pinterest that stated Disney movies made me have unrealistic expectations for my hair haha.

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