ONLINE LITERATURE COURSE
Dante’s Inferno for the 21st-Century Reader
Discover why Dante’s Divine Comedy has inspired writers and readers for nearly 700 years in this engaging, interdisciplinary discussion of some select canti (sections of poems) from the Inferno. We will delve into the fantastical world of Dante’s imagined afterlife and discuss his writing not only in its medieval context but also with an eye to its enduring relevance to modern-day readers. We will explore the literary, political, theological, and philosophical concerns of the poem to understand Dante’s work within the intellectual and social context of the Middle Ages. Some of the central topics of the course will include Dante’s relationship to Florence, his relationship to the people he encounters in Hell, and the unique aspects of his vision of the afterlife, including a variety of thematic concerns such as Dante’s understanding of poetry, grace, love, and divine justice.
Kristin Stasiowski, Ph.D is the Assistant Dean of International Programs and Education Abroad for the College of Arts and Sciences and is also an Assistant Professor of Italian Language and Literature in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages at Kent State University. She received her Ph.D from Yale University in Italian Language and Literature and has taught Italian language, literature, cinema, history and culture in both Florence, Italy and at Kent State. She recently published a chapter entitled A Divine Comedy for All Time: Dante’s Enduring Relevance for the Contemporary Reader in Italian Pop Culture: Media, Product, Imageries. Rome, Italy: Viella Editrice s.r.. Her current research is focused on Dante, Boccaccio, and the modern poet Clemente Rebora.
- CULTURE AND HISTORY: Students will develop a deeper appreciation of the historical, literary, and theological context of the Divine Comedy.
- CRITICAL APPROACH: Students will gain the ability to read works of literary, rhetorical, and cultural criticism and will work on their own critical, active reading and writing skills through directed reading.
- SENSE OF GENRE: Students will be able to identify formal elements of Dante’s use of language and poetry and how those shape the overall meaning of his poem.
- ORAL COMMUNICATION: Students will learn productive and relevant modes of discourse to speak thoughtfully and in an informed way about moral, philosophical, ethical, and theological concerns in the Divine Comedy.
Virtual Classroom: Upon registration, participants will have full access to an online educational platform with videos of recordings, syllabus, readings and discussion forum. Each lecture lasts 1 hour 15 minutes.
Credits: Certificate of Completion
Access: Students have lifetime and unlimited streaming access to the course content.
Supplemental Readings & Podcasts:
Readings and Podcasts are provided to students to enhance the course experience.