Journal Article

Art and Divine Order in the <i>Divina Commedia</i>

Els Jongeneel

in Literature and Theology

Volume 21, issue 2, pages 131-145
Published in print June 2007 | ISSN: 0269-1205
Published online June 2007 | e-ISSN: 1477-4623 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/litthe/frm008
Art and Divine Order in the Divina Commedia

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The present essay focuses on a conflict between ethics and aesthetics in the Divina Commedia, and on the way in which Dante has tried to resolve it. Although bound up with a Christian view on History, he embeds, as a self-conscious modern artist, his secular stil novo poetics of earthly love in God's salvation plan for humankind. This conflict requires a relatively long ‘journey’ of interpretation and reconsideration, illustrated by concrete ‘case-studies’, the most famous being that of Francesca of Rimini in Inferno V. In accordance with medieval hermeneutics, Dante makes use of a palinodic dialectic in order to reconcile profane art with divine order.

Journal Article.  6750 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Religion and Art, Literature, and Music

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