Dante in Translation

Yale,, Fall 2008 , Prof. Giuseppe Mazzotta

Updated On 02 Feb, 19


(ITAL 310) The course is an introduction to Dante and his cultural milieu through a critical reading of The Divine Comedy and selected minor works (Vita nuova, Convivio, De vulgari eloquentia, Epistle to Cangrande). An analysis of Dante's autobiography, the Vita nuova, establishes the poetic and political circumstances of the Comedy's composition. Readings of Inferno, Purgatorio and Paradiso seek to situate Dante's work within the intellectual and social context of the late Middle Ages, with special attention paid to political, philosophical and theological concerns. Topics in The Divine Comedy explored over the course of the semester include the relationship between ethics and aesthetics; love and knowledge; and exile and history.


Lecture 23: Paradise XXX, XXXI, XXXII, XXXIII

4.1 ( 11 )

Lecture Details

Dante in Translation (ITAL 310)

Professor Mazzotta lectures on the final cantos of Paradise (XXX-XXXIII). The pilgrims journey through the physical world comes to an end with his ascent into the Empyrean, a heaven of pure light beyond time and space. Beatrice welcomes Dante into the Heavenly Jerusalem, where the elect are assembled in a celestial rose. By describing the Empyrean as both a garden and a city, Dante recalls the poles of his own pilgrimage while dissolving the classical divide between urbs and rus, between civic life and pastoral retreat. Beatrices invective against the enemies of empire from the spiritual realm of the celestial rose attests to the strength of Dantes political vision throughout his journey into God. Dantes concern with the harmony of oppositions as he approaches the beatific vision is crystallized in the prayer to the Virgin Mary offered by St. Bernard, Dantes third and final guide. In his account of the vision that follows, the end of Dantes pilgrimage and the measure of its success converge in the poets admission of defeat in describing the face of God.

0000 - Chapter 1. Into the Empyrean
0521 - Chapter 2. Canto XXX Heavenly Jerusalem; Theatre and Imagination; Simon Magus
1906 - Chapter 3. Canto XXXI Farewell to Beatrice
2816 - Chapter 4. Canto XXXIII The Final Vision; The Journey and Its Telling
010031- Chapter 5. Question and Answer

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website httpopen.yale.educourses

This course was recorded in Fall 2008.



1042 Ratings
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Excellent course helped me understand topic that i couldn't while attendinfg my college.

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Great course. Thank you very much.