“Is justice delayed justice denied, or is it a case of better late than never? The poet Dante, author of the Divine Comedy, is being given a re-trial designed to posthumously clear his name.” […] —Deutsche Welle, May 21, 2021
“Among supporters for the Dante day is Italy’s minister for foreign affairs Enzo Moavero Milanesi, who recently expressed his enthusiasm for the project in an article penned for Corriere. ‘Dante is fully and pervasively part of the genetic code of what it is to be Italian,’ Moavero Milanesi wrote. Given that Dante’s poem is heavily Catholic, and shows Prophet Mohammed split in half by a demon for ‘sowing schism,’ conflating Dante with modern Italian culture reflects ideas that are outdated – and nationalistic.
“This uncritical celebration of the past diverts attention from the dark conditions on Italy’s shores. While Dante’s pilgrim makes an arduous but enlightening journey towards paradise in order to escape the inferno, Moavero Milanesi and Salvini would prefer that the migrants remain in limbo. Rather than supporting their assimilation, Moavero Milanesi has laid out a plan that advises migrants against attempting the crossing. [. . .] –Emma Leech, “A campaign to commemorate Dante distracts from a crisis on Italy’s coastline,” The New Statesman (July 30, 2019)
“”There were two sentences inflicted on Dante. The first was exile, the second was death and it will be interesting to understand whether in the light of the Florentine statutes of the time and the current legal principles the two judgments could be subject to revision,’ said Traversi.
“The plans to clear Dante’s name will begin with a conference in May, with participants including historians, linguists, lawyers – and Antoine de Gabrielli, the descendant of Cante de Gabrielli da Gubbio, the Florentine official who convicted Dante. They will be investigating if Dante’s sentences were just, said Traversi, or “the poisoned fruit of politics that used justice to attack an opponent”.
“‘Not everyone is convinced of the need for rehabilitation. Writing in the same paper, journalist Aldo Cazzullo said that Dante “is the one who invented the word ‘belpaese’ [beautiful country]’. ‘What could a late acquittal add, however necessary?’ he asked.” [. . .] –Alison Flood, The Guardian, February 1, 2021.
See the whole “Dante Alighieri racconta la politica” Facebook page here (last accessed January 13, 2021).
This piece by Sirante is in protest of the Giro d’Italia beginning in Israel. Note Dante and Virgil in the poster, watching today’s Inferno.
The image is modeled on Gustave Doré’s illustration of the violent against God in Inferno 14.
Contributed by Virginia Jewiss