Cover: Dante: The Story of His Life, from Harvard University PressCover: Dante in HARDCOVER

Dante

The Story of His Life

Product Details

HARDCOVER

$35.00 • £30.95 • €31.95

ISBN 9780674504868

Publication Date: 04/11/2016

Trade

496 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

8 line illustrations

Belknap Press

World

Also Available As

Jacket: Dante

PAPERBACK | $20.00

ISBN 9780674984066

Trade

Add to Cart

Educators: Request an Exam Copy (Learn more)

Media Requests:

Related Subjects

Marco Santagata’s Dante: The Story of His Life illuminates one of the world’s supreme poets from many angles—writer, philosopher, father, courtier, political partisan. Santagata brings together a vast body of Italian scholarship on Dante’s medieval world, untangles a complex web of family and political relationships for English readers, and shows how the composition of the Commedia was influenced by local and regional politics.

Santagata traces Dante’s attempts to establish himself in Florentine society as a man of both letters and action. He raises the intriguing possibility that Dante translated an illness, thought by some to be epilepsy, into an intensely physical phenomenology of love in the Vita Nuova. Most importantly, Santagata highlights Dante’s constant need to readjust his political stance—his involvement with the pro-Papacy Guelph faction as well as his network of patrons—in response to unfolding events. Linking these shifts to the changing ethical and political convictions expressed in the Commedia, Santagata reveals the paradoxical achievement of Dante’s masterpiece: a unified, universal poem nonetheless intimately entwined with the day-to-day dealings of its author.

The most striking facet of Dante’s personality was a belief in his unique destiny. In every aspect of his life—his birth under the sign of Gemini, falling in love with Beatrice, banishment from Florence—Dante glimpsed the shadow of his fate. This idea, cultivated by the poet in his youth, grew into the conviction that God had invested him with the prophetic mission of saving humanity.

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Composite photograph showing (top) entrance to the Prudential Center in Boston and (bottom) an internal construction partition/wall printed with the words 'Opening Day 2023' and other decorative text

A New Chapter for Harvard Book Store

Starting in the summer of 2023, for the first time in almost thirty years, Harvard Book Store will have two locations: the flagship store in Harvard Square, and a large new store in the Prudential Center in Boston. For University Press Week we wanted to show some bookseller love, so we reached out to Rachel Cass, General Manager of the Harvard Book Store, to see what’s planned for their exciting new location