Blake's Dantesque illustrations are the result of dialectics involving and questioning the very premises – political, theological and poetic – of the Commedia. Yet this very issue did not prevent the artist from rendering, at times more efficaciously and more profoundly than any other illustrator, Dante's unique atmospheres. Blake's approach thus enables us to revisit the Commedia from unaccustomed, privileged angles: on the one hand, we have great visionary poetry reflecting on itself; and on the other, the image that translates the poetic word, “transforming” it into a new creation able to shed an original light on important aspects of Dante's work and thoughts.
SILVIA DE SANTIS obtained her PhD in Romance Philology from the University “La Sapienza” of Rome and subsequently a Diploma as Archivist Paleographer at the Vatican School of Paleography, Diplomatics and Archives Administration. Parallel to her interest in Dante and especially in connection with William Blake, her main research interests concern Occitanic, old French and old Italian philology and linguistics. She has edited, with the transcription of the melodies, Il Mistero provenzale di sant'Agnese (Rome 2016). She has been Post-doc Researcher in the Department of Studi Europei, Americani e Interculturali of the University “La Sapienza” of Rome, where she studied the lexicon of emotions in Ancient French romance within the PRIN project “Canone letterario e lessico delle emozioni nel Medioevo europeo”.