Uber Reviews for Charon, Boatman of Hades

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SERVING HADES AND THE SURROUNDING AREA
127 Fields of Punishment Ave.

[…]

“✩ ✩ ✩
KAREN T.
He arrived on time, so three stars for that. But he was not very fun. I said, ‘Hey, Charon,’ and he got offended, saying, ‘It’s pronounced “Karen.” ‘ So I was, like, ‘Oh, my God! Shut up! My name is Karen!,’ and then he rolled his burning fire-eyes and melted into the ether and left me there in the middle of the River Styx. Rude.

“✩
LISA M.
Big surprise. Yet another service that won’t take me to Brooklyn.” –Cirocco Dunlap, The New Yorker

Benjamin Alire Sáenz, “Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe” (2014)

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“Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn the most important truths about themselves and the kind of people they want to be.”  —Amazon

Contributed by Gabriella and Pamela Montanaro

Nine Circles of PR Hell

“For those PR professionals not involved in the candy, safety, party, and costume industries, what does Halloween mean for them? With everyone thinking of the underworld, it made me think about the venial and mortal sins that some PR professionals may commit as part of their daily practice of PR. In his Divine Comedy, Dante Alighieri wrote of the Nine Circles of Hell. That caused me to wonder – what are the nine circles of PR Hell?” — Mark W. McClennan, PRSA Boston, October 31, 2014

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Wallace Zane, Taxi Inferno (2014)

Taxi InfernoA death and violence, deceit and fraud, cab-driving, police-chasing translation of Dante’s Inferno.

“Set in the hellish world of cab-driving in Los Angeles in the year 2000, Taxi Inferno is an idiomatic interpretation/translation and transposition of Inferno. In place of Dante walking through hell with Virgil as the guide, the author is driving a cab in LA with Charles Bukowski. The narrative is shot through with the feel of dim and smoky death and the thrall of disgust that impels one on, as is Dante’s.

Taxi Inferno is written as a mirror image of Inferno. Virgil becomes less competent the deeper into hell they go; Bukowski becomes more so, and even heroic in his guidance. Each location in Los Angeles compares with one of the circles of hell, corresponding to Dante’s description of the terrain and its punishments.”    —Amazon.com

Contributed by Wallace Zane

420PEOPLE, “Inferno – Variations on Dante” (2014)

Inferno - Variations on DanteCzech dance company 420PEOPLE has created a piece entitled “Inferno – Variations on Dante“, which premiered on September 30th, 2014. The performance is described on the 420PEOPLE website as

“A tragicomic parable on a human fight with sorrow, boredom and laziness that sneak into our lives with middle age. Inferno is not a place, it is a state of soul.”

 

Contributed by Michele Torresani

SCAD Museum of Art: “The Divine Comedy”

Muluneh Aida, 99 SeriesThe Savannah College of Art and Design’s museum featured an exhibit called “The Divine Comedy: Heaven, Purgatory and Hell Revisited by Contemporary African Artists” which ran from October 16, 2014 to January 25, 2015.

“SCAD presents the U.S. premiere of ‘The Divine Comedy: Heaven, Purgatory and Hell Revisited by Contemporary African Artists.’ Curated by the internationally acclaimed Simon Njami, this monumental exhibition explores the thematic sequences of Dante Alighieri’s epic poem through works by more than 40 contemporary artists from 19 African countries as well as the African diaspora. [. . .]

“Through a variety of media, this exhibition demonstrates how concepts visited in Dante’s poem transcend Western traditions and resonate with diverse contemporary cultures, belief systems and political issues. Overall, the exhibition provides a probing examination of life, death and the continued power of art to express the unspoken and intangible.”    —SCAD Museum of Art

The exhibition was later featured at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art, running from April 8 to August 2, 2015. The large exhibition was on display in the entrance pavilion, stairwells, and all three floors of the museum. See the National Museum of African Art’s exhibition page here, and Elena Goukassian’s review in the Washington Post here (April 16, 2015).

SwooshArt

Italian artist Davide Bedoni creates images of fine art as if sponsored by Nike.

“The Ghosts of Paolo and Francesca Appear to Dante and Virgil” by Ary Scheffer (1835): SwooshArt “Dante and Virgil in Hell” by William-Adolphe Bouguereau (1850): SwooshArt

 

Click here to view the images on tumblr.

The Veronica Mars Movie (2014)

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In The Veronica Mars Movie, a spinoff of the television series Veronica Mars created by Rob Thomas, Veronica (Kristen Bell) returns to her hometown to solve a crime. At her ten-year high school reunion, she makes a Dante reference:

“In a lesser known epic poem, Dante’s Inferno 2: ‘Hell Freezes Over’, ten years after escaping the nine circles, Dante returns. You know, for old times’ sake. Have a couple shots, catch up with the gang [. . .] See if Lucifer is still a bitch.”    —The Veronica Mars Movie

The Wisdom of the Exile

Opinionator“There are many types of uprooting. The brutal expulsions like those now devastating hundreds of thousands in countries like Iraq and Syria are common in the cycles of politics and war. But it can be more subtly political, too, as was Dante’s banishment from Florence at the hands of the Black Guelphs, or economic, as it was for the immigrants dancing in the Argentine brothels.

“Each person who survives this uprooting and finds himself in exile experiences an existential earthquake of sorts: Everything turns upside down, all certitudes are shattered. The world around you ceases to be that solid, reliable presence in which you used to feel comfortable, and turns into a ruin — cold and foreign. ‘You shall leave everything you love most: this is the arrow that the bow of exile shoots first,’ wrote Dante in Paradiso. [. . .]

“An Argentine poet called the tango ‘un pensamiento triste que se baila’: a sad thought that is danced. I am not sure. The tango is not just something sad — it is sadness itself that is danced. The ultimate sadness that comes from the earthquake of uprooting. If philosophers don’t manage to get them themselves exiled, at least they should take up tango for a while.”    —The New York Times

To read the full article on The New York Times‘ “Opinionator,” click here.

Grimes’ “Go” Video

grimes-go-video-blood-diamonds-dante-inferno On August 27, 2014, Grimes (Claire Boucher) released a music video for her single “Go” (feat. Blood Diamonds, aka Mike Tucker), providing the viewer with a glimpse into what Grimes perceives as Dante’s modern Hell. Though “abstract” in its composition, Grimes and her brother-turned-fellow-director strategically chose to set the video in various locations representing human carelessness and Hell on Earth. The video casts Grimes as the pilgrim and Blood Diamonds as Virgil, and begins with screenwriter David Hayter (X-Men, Watchmen) reading the opening verses of the poem: “Midway upon the journey of our life, I found myself within a forest dark, for the straightforward pathway had been lost.”

See Spin Magazine for Chris Martins’ post on the video, which he calls “a sci-fi homage to Dante’s Inferno.”

See the full video here.grimes-go-video-blood-diamonds-dante-inferno

Contributed by Ryan Alexander (George Mason University, 2016)