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The Poet, the Political Thinker, the Man

List Price: $19.95

August 28, 2007 | Paperback | 6-1/4 x 9-1/4, 448 pages | ISBN 9781593761622
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Dante is one of the towering figures of European literature, yet there remain a surprising number of questions about his life and works; Who was the leader that would bring peace to the world, as Virgil and Beatrice prophesied in the Commedia? Who was Beatrice, really? Was De Vulgari Eloquentia truly a treatise on the art of writing? Did he need a medicinal muse? Dante scholar and translator Barbara Reynolds contends the master used cannabis to soar to greater creative heights.

Besides proposing a solution to the famous prophecies, this lively, engaging, and elegantly written biography contains a provocative new idea in virtually every chapter, offering alternative interpretations of his work. Drawing from an impressive array of sources, Reynolds provides a comprehensive analysis of the poet, placing him within the context of his culture and society to deepen our understanding of a complicated man who was irritable, opinionated, and vengeful—and an extraordinary genius.

About Barbara Reynolds

Dr. Barbara Reynolds, was an an Italian scholar, lexicographer and translator, and Dante expert. A graduate of University College, London, Dr. Reynolds was Lecturer in Italian at Cambridge for twenty-two years and later Reader in Italian Studies at Nottingham. She holds three honorary degrees, and was honored by the republic of Italy for her significant contributions to the field of Italian literature. Her most significant academic achievement may be her general editorship of The Cambridge Italian Dictionary: Vol. 1 (1962) and Vol. 2 (1981).

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