An Analysis of Dante’s The Inferno
The idea of hell is a vague concept in the minds of most people. Posing the questions, is hell real? is hell such a terrible place to be? how do I keep from ending up in hell? is surely not uncommon. The ultimate question when observing hell, more specifically Dante’s hell, is, does the threat of hell cause people to act morally? To answer this question, it is imperative that Dante’s The Inferno is analyzed, along with the thoughts of several scholars on the topic of hell. Before proceeding, a working definition of hell will be identified as, from the Merriam-Webster dictionary, “the place where the devil lives and where evil people go after they die according to some religions or a very difficult or unpleasant situation or experience.” Also, before proceeding, a critical, yet brief understanding, of Dante’s hell must be administered. Dante is a poet, wandering through a dark forest, who sees a promising looking hill. He attempts a climb up the hill, but runs into three beasts and runs back into the valley, meeting Virgil, who admires Dante. Virgil was sent to Dante by the power of heaven to help Dante on a journey through hell, purgatory, and finally to heaven. Dante and Virgil then depart on their infamous journey through hell, where Virgil identifies the nine different circles of hell, and explains the different types of people who are excommunicated, to the degree of their sin. Along the way, Dante meets several people in the different circles whom he recognizes. Some of the experiences Dante has caused him extreme shock, leading him to faint. Belliotti, a Professor in the Philosophy department at SUNY Fredonia, summarizes this story similarly, “Dante 's Infe...
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... they all have in common is that they see themselves as being determined by causes or forces outside of themselves.” This summary of Dante’s inferno is quite accurate, and falls in line with many beliefs of hell and its existence. The souls in hell are essentially there because their actions were determined by an outside force or ‘higher power’ to be unfit, resulting in eternal punishment and or torment. The idea that hell is something which causes people to act moral is completely defeated in the aforementioned ideas. People like John Calvin and Jonathan Edwards would have some believe just the opposite, that the horrors and calamity of hell make for a moral person. However, this is not the case because there would be much more morality in the current era, many humans simply do not believe in any possibility of hell, and because of the Christian idea of repentance.
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- Hell: Not Enough to Act Morally An Analysis of Dante’s The Inferno The idea of hell is a vague concept in the minds of most people. Posing the questions, is hell real. is hell such a terrible place to be. how do I keep from ending up in hell. is surely not uncommon. The ultimate question when observing hell, more specifically Dante’s hell, is, does the threat of hell cause people to act morally. To answer this question, it is imperative that Dante’s The Inferno is analyzed, along with the thoughts of several scholars on the topic of hell.... [tags: Divine Comedy, Hell, Virgil, Inferno]
1555 words (4.4 pages)
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1539 words (4.4 pages)
- In the epic poem of The Inferno of Dante, we are introduced to the protagonist Dante, who travels through nine circles of hell along with his “master” Virgil. This journey reveals all the depths of hell as a poem retold by Dante himself. After a quick recap of the poem in a greater detail you will soon see the many unanswered questions this book poses. The poem begins with Dante wandering through the woods pondering the rights and wrongs of life. While walking through the woods Dante becomes threatened by creatures blocking his path, but then a dead poet, he admires named Virgil comes to rescue him.... [tags: Hell, Divine Comedy, Virgil, Inferno]
1575 words (4.5 pages)
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1225 words (3.5 pages)
- The Divine Comedy (The Inferno and Purgatorio, in this matter) without Virgil would be like coffee without cream. Without Virgil, Dante would never have completed his journey. Without reason, Dante would never have the courage to go through his redemption. We meet Virgil in the Inferno just when Dante begins to lose all hope in going through that “shadowed forest.” Beatrice has appointed him to guide our hero through hell and then through Purgatory. Himself being in Limbo, Virgil knew the nooks and crannies of hell.... [tags: essays research papers]
2919 words (8.3 pages)