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Dante, Divina Commedia
Course codes: ITAL4116 and ITAL4916.
Course unit value: 0.5.
This course is designed for final-year students from other departments wishing to take an option in early Italian literature as part of their own degree, but also incorporates the Paradiso course traditionally available to students in the Department of Italian. It covers the whole of the Commedia, offering a general examination of philosophical, theological and historical aspects of the poem, and of literary and stylistic matters through close reading of selected episodes. All students are expected to have a good reading knowledge of Italian. Students from the Department of Italian reading for the Paradiso in particular will follow the whole course but will attend an additional series of tutorials dedicated to the final cantica. Only in exceptional circumstances, and by agreement with the course tutor, will students of the Italian Department who have not followed the first- and second-year Inferno and Purgatorio courses be allowed to take this option.
Assessment: either one unseen three-hour written examination (ITAL4116) (100%) or one assessed 5000 word essay (ITAL4916) (100%).
Tutor: Professor John Took.
Preparatory reading and set texts: students are strongly recommended to read the whole of the
Commedia, at least in translation, before the start of the course.
There are several good parallel-text editions available, and we especially
recommend those with translations by:
- C. S. Singleton (Princeton University Press).
- R. Kirkpatrick (Penguin).
- M. Musa (Penguin).
Good Italian annotated
editions include those edited by
- U. Bosco and G. Reggio (Le Monnier).
- A. M. Chiavacci Leonardi (Mondadori).
- N. Sapegno (La Nuova Italia).
- The Cambridge Companion to Dante, ed. R. Jacoff (Cambridge University Press).
- J. Scott, Understanding Dante (Notre Dame University Press).