• Review: Dante in the long nineteenth century: nationality, identity, and appropriation, ed. by Aida Audeh and Nick Havely, Choice (March 2013) 

     

    The "long nineteenth century" began with Dante's name and writings barely emerging (thanks to the impetus provided by nascent Romanticism) from the neglect to which the "enlightened" taste of the previous century had consigned them. It ended with Dante installed as the national poet of a newly united Italy, and his work--chiefly, of course, the Commedia--accepted as a touchstone of artistic achievement and historical significance among readers both within Italy and far beyond its recently delineated borders. This remarkably rich and informative collection of essays, by 19 scholars from six countries, offers a wide-ranging overview of Dante's 19th-century fortuna in criticism, scholarship, literature, the visual arts, music, cinema, politics, education, and cultural theory.  
      

    Dante in the long nineteenth century  

    Much space is rightly devoted to Dante's importance in debates about Italian nationality and identity during the Risorgimento; Audeh (art history, Hamline Univ.) and Havely (literature, Univ. of York, UK) also find room for studies of his appropriation by French, British, Irish, German, and American writers and thinkers and their counterparts in such less predictable locales as Turkey and Bengal. Readable and fascinating throughout, this book is indispensable for those interested in Dante, comparative literature, and interdisciplinary cultural studies.

    Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty. -- S. Botterill, University of California, Berkeley