Dante's Commedia: Theology as Poetry (ND Devers Series Dante by Vittorio Montemaggi, Matthew Treherne

By Vittorio Montemaggi, Matthew Treherne

In Dante's Commedia: Theology as Poetry, a world crew of theologians and Dante students supply a uniquely wealthy set of views excited by the connection among theology and poetry within the Commedia. interpreting Dante's therapy of questions of language, personhood, and the physique; his engagement with the theological culture he inherited; and the results of his paintings for modern theology, the members argue for the shut intersection of theology and poetry within the textual content in addition to the significance of theology for Dante experiences. via dialogue of concerns starting from Dante's use of images of the Church to the importance of the smile for his poetic undertaking, the essayists provide convincing facts that his theology isn't really what underlies his narrative poem, nor what's contained inside of it: it truly is as an alternative totally built-in with its poetic and narrative texture.

As the essays show, the Commedia is firmly rooted within the medieval culture of mirrored image at the nature of theological language, whereas at the same time proposing its readers with unheard of, sustained poetic experimentation. Understood during this means, Dante emerges as essentially the most unique theological voices of the center Ages.

"Long taken without any consideration in Dante experiences, the nexus among theology and poetry in Dante's paintings, specially within the Commedia, has purely relatively been subjected to looking out severe research within the previous few many years. the students represented during this interdisciplinary assortment discover the poem's claims to operate as a textual content embodying theological fact and, extra really, as a poetic illustration of the adventure of the magical. Their efforts contain a landmark in sleek Dante studies." --Steven Botterill, collage of California, Berkeley

"Moved by means of either highbrow interest and a palpable love in their topic, a gaggle of either younger and proven students, either theologians and Dante experts, from either side of the Atlantic, collaborate during this ebook to go looking during the poet's quantity and pose clean questions on the relation of poetry and theology in Dante's work." --Ronald L. Martinez, Brown University

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It is a Trinitarian commonplace to speak of the divine persons as knowing and loving one another. The distinctive Dantean touch is found in the notion of a self-reflecting divine smile-"te ... arridi"-and with it the idea of God as a community of eternal, spontaneous delight. With this shared joy, this triune smiling, it would not be out of keeping if the divine face that Dante beholds at the end of his vision smiled. After all, even if Jesus of Nazareth wept during his earthly life, might not the Second Person of the Trinity by contrast be all about joy?

IS: A place to begm any mqulry of the smile in Dante is with the word studles In the ED forridere (4:920-21), rno (4:977-78), sorridere (5:336 -37), and sorrtso (5:337)· For the most extensive treatment of the smile in Dante heretofore, see Burrows, Gestures and Looks, 156 -79. 16. Paul Binski writes: "Christianity is not the most jocular of iconic religIOns, and offers us nothing at its heart to compare with the serene smile of the Buddha, or the fecund cheer of the Hindu pantheon. an art: J~sus wept, but ~o.

23. On the Gothic smile, see Binski, "The Angel Choir"; Svanberg, "The Gothic Smile"j Sauerlander, Cathedrals and Sculpture, vol. 2; and Trumble, A Brief History of the Smile, I03-32. Menard (Le rire) connects the advent of the smiling saints and angels to the new frequency of the word saurire over rire. Binski contrasts laughter and smiling: "Because true expressivity requires control, the nuanced smile lies essentially within the sphere of muscular control, and hence of accultorated bodily dispositions.

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