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Confounding the Apes

P.N. Furbank, 22 August 1996

The Divine Comedy 
by Dante Alighieri, translated by Allen Mandelbaum.
Everyman, 798 pp., £14.99, May 1995, 1 85715 183 6
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The Inferno of Dante. A New Verse Translation 
by Robert Pinsky, illustrated by Michael Mazur.
Dent, 427 pp., £20, February 1996, 9780460877640
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Dante’s Hell 
translated by Steve Ellis.
Chatto, 208 pp., £15.99, March 1994, 0 7011 6127 2
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... like ours, and that of the poet, who, by the journey’s end, claims to share God’s view.’ Michael Mazur’s tenebrous illustrations are sometimes most evocative and impressive. His bird’s-eye view of the infernal abyss is too murky to make much of, but he has had the neat idea of superimposing an explanatory overlay of the kind you get in ...

English Words and French Authors

John Sturrock, 8 February 1990

A New History of French Literature 
edited by Denis Hollier.
Harvard, 1280 pp., £39.95, October 1989, 0 674 61565 4
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... on the cultural politics of André Malraux, and best of all, a brilliantly revealing chapter by Michael Fried on the spectator-centred aesthetics of Diderot in his Salons. The association of words with music is traced from the jongleurs in the 11th century through its successive manifestations as an element of courtly spectacle to interesting chapters on ...

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