Dante brings the legendary author—and the medieval Italy of his era— to vivid life, describing the political intrigue, battles, culture, and society that shaped his writing.
Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy has defined how people imagine and depict heaven and hell for over seven centuries.
However, outside of Italy, his other works are not well known, and less still is generally known about the context he wrote them in. In Dante, Barbero brings the legendary author’s Italy to life, describing the political intrigue, battles, city and society that shaped his life and work. The son of a shylock who dreams of belonging to the world of writers and nobles, we follow Dante into the dark corridors of politics where ideals are shattered by rampant corruption, and then into exile as he travels Italy and discovers the extraordinary color and variety of the countryside, the metropolises, and the knightly courts.
This is a book by a serious scholar with real popular appeal, as evidenced by its bestseller ranking in Italy. It is a remarkable piece of forensic investigation into medieval Italian life.
Alessandro Barbero is an Italian historian, novelist, and essayist. He won the 1996 Strega Prize, for Bella vita e guerre altrui di Mr. Pyle gentiluomo. Barbero is the author of The Battle, an account of the Battle of Waterloo; The Day of the Barbarians, the story of the Battle of Adrianople; and Charlemagne—all published in Britain.He writes for Il Sole 24 Ore and La Stampa, is the editor of Storia d’Europa e del Mediterranean, and regularly appears on Italian television and radio. In 2005, the Republic of France awarded Barbero with the title of Chevalier de l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres. He lives in Italy and Dante is his first book to be published in America.
Allan Cameron has translated twenty-four books including The Anonymous Novel by Alessando Barbero. He lives in Glasgow.