The Cosmos of Dante's Comedy|
Spring 2019 not offered
ITAL 226, COL 234, RELI 218, MDST 226|
This course provides an in-depth introduction to Dante Alighieri's 14th-century masterpiece as a point of entry to the history of Western literature, philosophy, and science. The core of the course consists of an intensive study of Dante's encyclopedic poem in relation to the culture and history of Medieval Europe. Major topics include: representations of the afterlife; the soul's relation to the divine; concepts of modernity and antiquity in the Middle Ages; notions of authorship and authority during the 13th and 14th centuries; vernacular poetics and the medieval genre system; the culture and materiality of manuscripts in the Middle Ages; gender and genre in Dante and the 12th- to 14th-century lyric; intertextuality and imitation; classical and medieval language theory; the role of the classics in the Middle Ages; Dante's concepts of governance; myth and theology in Dante's Christian poetics; and the reception to Dante's work from the 14th-century to present. The course combines a close analysis of Dante's literary strategies with exercises in critical writing and in multimedia translation and adaptation, aimed at prompting critical reflection on the ways in which present cultural practices are built upon the practices of the past. This course is conducted in English; no previous knowledge of Italian is required.
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|Course Format: Lecture / Discussion||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (COL)(ITST)(MDST-MN)(MDST)(MDST-Art/Arch)(MDST-History)(MDST-Lang/Lit)(MDST-Phil/Reli)(RELI-MN)(RELI)(RMST)(SISP-Reli Conc)
DANTE ALIGHIERI, Vita nova (The New Life), any unabridged edition
DANTE ALIGHIERI, The Divine Comedy, any complete edition of the three canticles (Inferno, Purgatorio, Paradiso) with commentary (eds. R. M. Durling and R. L. Martinez, recommended; ed. R. Hollander; ed. Ch. Singleton)
JACOFF, Rachel (ed.), 2011. The Cambridge Companion to Dante. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
|Examination and Assignments: |
Oral presentation, midterm take-home exam, discussion questions, final take-home exam, digital project.
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
This class will be discussion-based with lectures offering historical and cultural contextualization. Students will be expected and encouraged to participate fully in discussion and in guided classroom activities. This course counts towards the Religion Department major "Historical Traditions" requirement.