ITAL-4387 Love & Friendship in Medieval Ages
This course traces the evolving meaning of the term “amistà” (“Friendship) in the Italian literature of 13th and 14th centuries. The notion of friendship allowed a certain degree of ambiguity since Classical Antiquity, signifying in Latin poetry alternatively an erotic relationship and a non-erotic, same-sex relationship. Christian poets such as Dante, Boccaccio and Petrarch dramatize the notion of friendship in a way that exploits poetically the term’s ambiguity in an attempt to reconcile between divine love (Agape, or charity) and human love (Eros). Readings will include Dante, Petrarch and Boccaccio. A portion of this course will be devoted to reading facsimile editions of 14th-century manuscripts, including Petrarch’s partially autograph copy of his Songbook (Vat. Lat. 3195) and Boccaccio’s autograph of the Decameron (Hamilton 90). Course conducted in Italian.