International Seminar on Critical Approaches to Dante (ISCAD) 5: Emotion and Communities

When and Where

Wednesday, April 12, 2023 9:00 am to Thursday, April 13, 2023 5:00 pm
Room 400
Muzzo Family Alumni Hall,
University of Toronto, 121 St. Joseph Street, Toronto


Wednesday, April 12, 2023

10 am – Welcome & Greetings

  • Luca Somigli (Italian Studies and Goggio Chair)
  • Fr. Augustine Thompson (Pontifical Institute for Medieval Studies, Praeses)
  • Veronica Manson (Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Director)

10:30 am – Opening Remarks

  • Elisa Brilli & Giulia Gaimari (University of Toronto)

11 am – Opening Lecture

  • Gur Zak (Hebrew University of Jerusalem), “Dante’s Political Emotions: Compassion, Envy, and Community in the Purgatorio”

12 pm – Lunch Break

2 pm – Session 1

  • Chair: Giulia Gaimari (University of Toronto)
  • Beth Coggeshall (Florida State University), “Negotiating Friendships in Dante’s Italy”
  • Giuliano Milani (Université Gustave Eiffel), “Building Communities Through Shame. On the Tenzone with Forese”
  • Respondent: Eva Plesnik (University of Toronto, Ph.D. student)

3:30 pm – Coffee Break

4 pm – Session 2

  • Chair: Konrad Eisenbichler (University of Toronto)
  • Paolo Borsa (Université de Fribourg), “Love and Hope in Dante’s Lyric Poetry”
  • Giulia Gaimari (University of Toronto), “‘Propuosi di farlo sentire’: Feeling Together in Dante’s Vita Nova”
  • Respondent: Mia Lofranco (University of Toronto, Ph.D. student)

6 pm – “How does it feel? Dante’s Emotions Today” Exhibition Opening & Reception*

In partnership with the Istituto Italiano di Cultura / Italian Cultural Institute of Toronto, 496 Huron St, Toronto, ON M5R 2R3.

*This event is reserved for conference participants. The general audience is welcome to visit the exhibition on April 13-21. Admission to the exhibition is free, but tickets must be booked on Eventbrite (slots of 30 minutes for the VR experience). 

Thursday, April 13, 2023

9 am – Session 3

  • Chair: Justin Steinberg (University of Chicago)
  • Elisa Brilli (University of Toronto), “Civitas: An Emotional Definition of Dante’s Political Vocabulary”
  • Laura Banella (University of Notre Dame), “Dante’s Ideal Lyric Community between the De Vulgari Eloquentia and the Commedia”
  • Respondent: Alice Martignoni (University of Toronto, Ph.D. student)

10:30 am – Coffee Break

11 am – Session 4

  • Chair: Laura Ingallinella (University of Toronto)
  • Kristina Olson (George Mason University), “‘Da lingua che chiami mamma o babbo’: Paternal Grief and Affect in Dante”
  • Roberto Rea (University of Rome Tor Vergata), “Dante’s Sins: Emotions and Redemption in the Comedy”
  • Respondent: Alex Bermudez Manjarres (University of Toronto, Ph.D. student)

12:30 pm – Lunch Break

4:00 pm – Closing Lecture (University of St. Michael's College Dante Lecture: Special Edition)

  • Introduced by Irene Morra (Principal of Saint Michael’s College in the University of Toronto) & Elisa Brilli (University of Toronto)
  • Heather Webb (University of Cambridge), “Dante’s Affective Communities”


For full details of the conference including abstracts of papers and information about the speakers, access the conference programme.

This lecture will be livestreamed on the Department's YouTube channel.



Department of Italian Studies (University of Toronto)

University of Saint Michael's College

Istituto Italiano di Cultura Toronto

Office of the Vice-President, International (University of Toronto)

Centre for Medieval Studies (University of Toronto)

Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies


University of Toronto, 121 St. Joseph Street, Toronto