Divine Dialectic: Dante's Incarnational Poetry

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University of Toronto Press, 2000 - Literary Criticism - 254 pages
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In this book, Guy Raffa offers a fresh reading of Dante's major literary works - the Divine Comedy and the Vita nuova - that combines central tenets of incarnational theology and dialectical thought to illuminate the poet's renowned ability to 'have it both ways' on issues that conventionally elicit an 'either/or' response. Viewing Dante as a poet of revision, not conversion, Raffa challenges a dominant paradigm in Dante criticism and takes full account of the poet's unconventional approach to such conventional dichotomies as eros and spirituality, fame and humility, action and contemplation, and obedience and transgression. Divine Dialectic ultimately argues that Dante crosses textual and theological boundaries in his medieval epic to promote the paradoxical union of contradiction and resolution as a way of reading his poem and, by extension, the world itself.

  

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Contents

Chapter
23
Dantes Infernal Web of Pride
37
Chapter
67
Incarnational Reflections and Lines
87
The Poets Incarnate Word
110
Chapter Three
125
The BitterSweet Lessons of Cacciaguida and Scipio
147
Dantes Divine Tetragon
164
Intellectual Action and Dialectical Hermeneutics
178
Notes
197
Index
241
Copyright

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About the author (2000)

GUY P. RAFFA is Associate Professor of Italian at the University of Texas at Austin.

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