Author: Erich Auerbach, Edward W. Said
Publisher: Princeton University Press
More than half a century after its translation into English, Erich Auerbach's Mimesis remains a masterpiece of literary criticism. A brilliant display of erudition, wit, and wisdom, his exploration of how great European writers from Homer to Virginia Woolf depicted reality has taught generations how to read Western literature. This new expanded edition includes a substantial essay in introduction by Edward Said as well as an essay, never before translated into English, in which Auerbach responds to his critics. A German Jew, Auerbach was forced out of his professorship at the University of Marburg in 1935. He left for Turkey, where he taught at the state university in Istanbul. There he wrote Mimesis, publishing it in German after the end of the war. Displaced as he was, Auerbach produced a work of great erudition that contains no footnotes, basing his arguments instead on searching, illuminating readings of key passages from his primary texts. His aim was to show how from antiquity to the twentieth century literature progressed toward ever more naturalistic and democratic forms of representation. This essentially optimistic view of European history now appears as a defensive--and impassioned--response to the inhumanity he saw in the Third Reich. Ranging over works in Greek, Latin, Spanish, French, Italian, German, and English, Auerbach used his remarkable skills in philology and comparative literature to refute any narrow form of nationalism or chauvinism, in his own day and ours. For many readers, both inside and outside the academy, Mimesis is among the finest works of literary criticism ever written. This Princeton Classics edition includes a substantial introduction by Edward Said as well as an essay in which Auerbach responds to his critics.
Did Dante Alighieri, author of The Divine Comedy as a young man in Florence sleep with Beatrice Portinari before and after her marriage? Did the poet travel after her death through Hell to find her again? The clues to this academic detective story, writes Mark Jay Mirsky, lie not only in Dante's earlier poetry, The New Life, or in The Divine Comedy, but in the Zohar of Moses de Leon, a Jewish text written some years before and based on Neoplatonic ideas similar to those that inspired Dante. are inaccessible to most reader unfamiliar with the boldness of Dante's use of the philosophical debate in the Middle Ages. Does Dante's Commedia hint at his hope of intimacy with Beatrice in the Highest Heaven? mediaeval theologians, Dante's personal life, and the sources of his classical education to propose a radical reading of Dante. The text compounds the riddles of dream, poetry, philosophy and Dante's concealed autobiography in his work. It treats the Commedia in the spirit of its title, as a hopeful and comic version of the other world.
Sublime poetic masterpiece recounting the poet's allegorical journey through the afterlife follows Dante through the infernal regions of Hell, where punishment is determined by gravity of sinner's transgressions, through Purgatory where souls are atoning for their misdeeds and to the entrance to Paradise, where he meets his beloved Beatrice.
The Esoterism of Dante
Author: Rene Guenon
Publisher: Sophia Perennis
Especially since the Renaissance, some in Western Christendom have suspected that the deeper dimension of their tradition has somehow been lost, and have therefore sought to discover, or create, an 'esoteric' or 'initiatic' Christianity. In the middle of the nineteenth century two scholars, Gabriele Rossetti and Eugne Aroux, pointed to certain esoteric meanings in the work of Dante Alighieri, notably The Divine Comedy. Partly based on their scholarship, Gunon in 1925 published The Esoterism of Dante. From the theses of Rosetti and Aroux, Gunon retains only those elements that prove the existence of such hidden meanings; but he also makes clear that esoterism is not 'heresy' and that a doctrine reserved for an elite can be superimposed on the teaching given the faithful without standing in opposition to it. One of Ren Gunon's lifelong quests was to discover, or revive, the esoteric, initiatory dimension of the Christian tradition. In the present volume, along with its companion volume Insights into Christian Esoterism (which includes the separate study Saint Bernard), Gunon undertakes to establish that the three parts of The Divine Comedy represent the stages of initiatic realization, exploring the parallels between the symbolism of the Commedia and that of Freemasonry, Rosicrucianism, and Christian Hermeticism, and illustrating Dante's knowledge of traditional sciences unknown to the moderns: the sciences of numbers, of cosmic cycles, and of sacred astrology. In these works Gunon also touches on the all-important question of medieval esoterism and discusses the role of sacred languages and the principle of initiation in the Christian tradition, as well as such esoteric Christian themes and organizations as the Holy Grail, the Guardians of the Holy Land, the Sacred Heart, the Fedeli d'Amore and the 'Courts of Love', and the Secret Language of Dante. In addition to Dante, various other paths toward a possible Christian esoterism have been explored by many investigators-the legend of the Holy Grail, the Knights Templars, the tradition of Courtly Love, Freemasonry, Rosicrucianism, and Christian Hermeticism-and Gunon deals with all of these in the present volume as well as his Insights into Christian Esoterism. In the latter, one chapter in particular, 'Christianity and Initiation', will be of special interest with regard to the history of the Traditionalist School. When first published as an article, it gave rise to some controversy because Gunon here reaffirmed his denial of the efficacy of the Christian sacraments as rites of initiation, a point of divergence between the teachings of Gunon and those of other key perennialist thinkers. Both The Esoterism of Dante and Insights into Christian Esoterism will be of inestimable value to all who are struggling to come to terms with the fullness of the Christian tradition.
Author: Dato Magradze
Traitors to All
Author: Giorgio Scerbanenco
Publisher: Melville House
From the godfather of Italian noir “A noir writer richly deserving rediscovery.” —Publishers Weekly One balmy spring evening on the outskirts of Milan, a Fiat with two passengers plunges into a canal. At first, their deaths are registered as an accident. But Duca Lamberti, the doctor-turned-detective of Giorgio Scerbanenco’s legendary series, suspects there’s more to it than that. Because that same canal has been the scene of other deaths, and all the incidents have one man in common: a lawyer with a murky past stretching all the way back to World War II—a man who, in fact, once shared a prison cell with Lamberti. Winner of the most prestigious European crime prize on its original publication in 1966, Traitors to All is classic noir by one of the greatest writers of the genre—a book that lays bare the connections between Milan’s troubled history during the war and its swinging sixties affluence, as well as an utterly absorbing tale of betrayal and revenge.