Dante Alighieri

Assignment: Dante Alighieri constructs his version of hell using the concept of “symbolic retribution,” or a punishment that symbolizes the crime committed. In this essay, fully discuss Dante’s use of symbolic retribution and what it might tell us about his religious and/or moral beliefs. In particular, use three specific examples from the Inferno of characters who are punished under Dante’s system. Be sure to explain their crime and how their punishment, according to Dante, symbolically fits it. This portion of the paper should consist of at least 700 words and use at least two outside sources (in addition to the primary text).

Then, in a 100-word addendum, imagine if Dante were writing his poem in the year 2019. What new character might he add? What is the crime and what kind of punishment would fit under the rules of symbolic retribution? Like in Dante’s work, your “character” should be a real, historical figure. The moral crimes and failings attributed to them should correspond to what is actually ascribed to that person in real life. The punishment of these crimes should ingeniously fit the crimes, in much the same manner as Dante achieves in the Inferno.

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In your paper, assume that your reader is already familiar with The Inferno and therefore, does not need a lengthy summary of the primary text (no more than ½ a page in length). Avoid writing in first person, unless necessary. Be sure to refer specifically to Dante’s work when providing examples for your paper. You are required to use at least two outside sources (in addition to the primary text) for this paper. Your sources must come from the library resources (books or databases) or other college-level, scholarly works. No websites may be used unless I have approved the source in advance. Reference materials (dictionaries, encyclopedias, wikipedias) cannot be used as your academic sources.

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