Dante's Inferno

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H. Altemus, 1971 - Poetry - 286 pages
1 Review
A faithful yet totally original contemporary spin on a classic, "Dante's Inferno" as interpreted by acclaimed artist Sandow Birk and writer Marcus Sanders is a journey through a Hell that bears an eerie semblance to our own world. Birk, hailed by the "Los Angeles Times" as one of "realism's edgier, more visionary painters," offers extraordinarily nuanced and vivid illustrations inspired by Gustave Dore's famous engravings. This modern interpretation depicts an infernal landscape infested with mini-malls, fast food restaurants, ATMs, and other urban fixtures, and a text that cleverly incorporates urban slang and references to modern events and people (as Dante did in his own time). Previously published in a deluxe, fine-press edition to wide praise, and accompanied by national exhibitions, this striking paperback edition of "Dante's Inferno" is a genuinely provocative and insightful adaptation for a new generation of readers.

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Intriguing

User Review  - PhendranaWarior - Borders

This poem has an interesting story line with likeable characters. The general idea of traveling to a spiritual dwelling place fascinates me altogether. Over all this book is excelent. Read full review

Dante's Inferno: the Indiana critical edition

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Musa (Italian, Indiana Univ.), who is noted for his translation of Dante's Vita Nuova, adds to the body of contemporary versions of the Inferno. Musa's verse translation is accurate but flattens Dante ... Read full review

Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
11
Section 3
20
Copyright

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About the author (1971)

Born Dante Alighieri in the spring of 1265 in Florence, Italy, he was known familiarly as Dante. His family was noble, but not wealthy, and Dante received the education accorded to gentlemen, studying poetry, philosophy, and theology. His first major work was Il Vita Nuova, The New Life. This brief collection of 31 poems, held together by a narrative sequence, celebrates the virtue and honor of Beatrice, Dante's ideal of beauty and purity. Beatrice was modeled after Bice di Folco Portinari, a beautiful woman Dante had met when he was nine years old and had worshipped from afar in spite of his own arranged marriage to Gemma Donati. Il Vita Nuova has a secure place in literary history: its vernacular language and mix of poetry with prose were new; and it serves as an introduction to Dante's masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, in which Beatrice figures prominently. The Divine Comedy is Dante's vision of the afterlife, broken into a trilogy of the Inferno, Purgatory, and Paradise. Dante is given a guided tour of hell and purgatory by Virgil, the pagan Roman poet whom Dante greatly admired and imitated, and of heaven by Beatrice. The Inferno shows the souls who have been condemned to eternal torment, and included here are not only mythical and historical evil-doers, but Dante's enemies. The Purgatory reveals how souls who are not irreversibly sinful learn to be good through a spiritual purification. And The Paradise depicts further development of the just as they approach God. The Divine Comedy has been influential from Dante's day into modern times. The poem has endured not just because of its beauty and significance, but also because of its richness and piety as well as its occasionally humorous and vulgar treatment of the afterlife. In addition to his writing, Dante was active in politics. In 1302, after two years as a priore, or governor of Florence, he was exiled because of his support for the white guelfi, a moderate political party of which he was a member. After extensive travels, he stayed in Ravenna in 1319, completing The Divine Comedy there, until his death in 1321.

Mark Musa is Professor of Italian Emeritus at Indiana University and a Guggenheim Fellow. He has translated Dante s Divine Comedy and La Vita Nuova and is the author of Advent at the Gates: Dante s Comedy.

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