The End of the Voyage: Discovering Dante’s Paradiso

If it is true that Italian comes from Dante as much as English from the plays of Shakespeare and the 1611 King James Bible, there is no better work to get acquainted to Italian culture than Dante’s Divine Comedy, which has the advantage of presenting itself as an encyclopaedia of the Middle Ages and providing its readership with the most comprehensive synthesis of Medieval culture. This short course will tackle the last part of Dante's Divine Comedy: the Paradiso. A selection of cantos from this realm of Dante’s voyage in the afterlife will be read and commented upon by tackling the text in English translation and at times comparing it with the original Italian. This experience in close reading will unveil the inner life and the art of a poet, whose craftmanship and vision has influenced greatly Western literatures and arts, and it will be instrumental in opening a window on the cultural life of the European Middle Ages.


  • Online


  • An Italian-English edition of Dante Alighieri’s Paradiso (part three of his Divine Comedy) in either the translation by Allen Mandelbaum or that by Jean and Robert Hollander.
  • John A. Scott, Understanding Dante (University of Notre Dame Press: 2004)
  • Prue Shaw, Reading Dante: From Here to Eternity (Liveright: 2014)

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