Interest in the Dante commentary tradition has grown considerably in recent years, but projects on this subject tend to focus on philological reconstructions. The contributors shift attention to the interpretation of texts, authors, and reading communities by examining how Dante commentators developed interpretative paradigms that contributed to the advancement of literary criticism and the creation of the Western literary canon. Dante commentaries illustrate the evolution of notions of "literariness" and literature, genre and style, intertextuality and influence, literary histories, traditions and canons, authorship and readerships, paratexts and textual materiality. The volume includes methodological essays exploring theoretical aspects of the tradition, such as the creation of a taxonomy for categorising typologies of commentaries; the relationship between commentators and their contemporary readers; the interplay between written and visual commentaries; and the impact of patronage on the forms of exegesis. Other essays, including two in Italian, examine case studies of individual commentaries, giving an account of the modus operandi of Dante's exegetes by relating their approaches to the cultural, ideological, and political agendas of the community of readers and scholars to which the commentators belonged.
Publisher: University of Notre Dame Press
Number of pages: 544
Weight: 680 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 25 mm
"Interpreting Dante is an extremely valuable and timely contribution to scholarship on the Dante commentary tradition. Such a collection, devoted both to methodological problems and to single cases, is a novelty. Additionally, as the first comprehensive volume on the topic in English, it will serve as an invaluable resource for students and scholars." --Anna Pegoretti, University of Warwick
"Interpreting Dante presents a genuinely top-notch collection of essays written by some of the most innovative and influential scholars in the field, on both sides of the Atlantic. A joy to read, from beginning to end, this volume will make a lasting impact on the study of Dante's reception." --Michael Papio, University of Massachusetts Amherst
"This volume draws on a diversity of critical perspectives to reevaluate the Dante commentary tradition not as a monolithic entity but as one embodying, in the rich plurality of its exegetical practices, the perennial challenges and rewards of 'interpreting Dante.' . . . the book leaves us with a sense of the commentary tradition as an animate entity, which continues to evolve and grow into the body of Dante scholarship as we know it today, If 'a text is also the history of its reception, ' then Interpreting Dante confirms that the Comedy continues to enjoy a prolific afterlife." --Speculum
." . . editors Paola Nasti and Claudia Rossignoli have crafted a volume that offers broad coverage while focusing on two periods of particular vitality: the earliest commentaries of the fourteenth century, and the sixteenth-century commentaries, which recast Dante's poem in the period of the Counter-Reformation. The meticulously researched and footnoted essays offer an entry point into the study not of Dante's Commedia, but of the most important commentaries that have accompanied the poem." --Renaissance Quarterly
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