Experiencing the Afterlife: Soul and Body in Dante and Medieval Culture
Experiencing the Afterlife provides the first sustained analysis of popular, vernacular depictions of the afterlife written in Italy before the Divine Comedy by authors such as Uguccione da Lodi, Glacomino da Verona, and Bonvesin da la Riva. Manuele Gragnolati uses his readings of these poets to provide a new interpretation of Dante's work. Combining elements from several disciplines, he investigates the richness of high medieval eschatology and the concept of personal identity it expresses. Gragnolati is particularly concerned with how the notions of body and pain characteristic of medieval spirituality and devotion inform the eschatological representations of the time, especially in their paradoxical urge to stress at once the physical experience of the separated soul and the final necessity of bodily resurrection. the specialized field of Dante studies, Gragnolati sheds new light on some of the most vigorously debated and crucial questions raised by the Divine Comedy, including the embryological discourse of Purgatorio 25, the relation between the soul's experience of pain in Purgatory and the devotion that late medieval culture expressed toward Christ's suffering, and the significance of the audacious vision of resurrected bodies that Dante the pilgrim enjoys at the end of his journey. At the same time, Gragnolati brings these questions back into contemporary discussions of medieval eschatology and opens new perspectives for current and future work on embodiment and identity. Scholars and students of Dante and Italian studies, as well as those in medieval history, religion, culture, and art history, will be rewarded by the fresh insights contained in Experiencing the Afterlife.
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Chapters Embryology and Aerial Bodies in Dantes Comedy
The Red Scripture the Purgatorio
Air Flesh and Fullness
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aerial body afterlife anima ante-purgatory Aquinas's Babilonia beatific vision beatitude Beatrice Black Scripture blessed bliss bodily return body and soul body's Bonaventure Bonvesin Bynum canto Capaneus carne Caroline Walker Bynum Chiavacci Leonardi Christ's Passion concept contrapasso contrast corpo damned soul Dante's debate desire Divine Comedy doctrine of unicity earth earthly body emphasis eschatological Etienne Gilson express flesh forma Giacomino Giacomino da Verona Gianfranco Contini Giudizio glory Golden Scripture heaven hell highlights homo human soul immortality infernal Istoria italiana l'anima Last Judgment letteratura Libro Mariae Mary Mary's Medieval Middle Ages Nardi Paradiso passage perfect person physical death physical pain pilgrim pilgrim's body plurality of forms poem punishment Purgatorio 25 purgatory quod rational soul Red Scripture resurrected body Riva separated soul shades sins soul's experience Statius Statius's stresses terrace texts thirteenth century Thomas Aquinas Three Scriptures tion tormented Uguccione Uguccione's unicity of form University Press Virgil vita