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Essay/Term paper: Paradiso

Essay, term paper, research paper:  Cliff Notes

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In spite of all the sheer effort put behind it, Dante"s

Paradiso is not easy to enjoy. It is an alliance

between difficulty and controversy. It is a narration of

Dante"s so called visit to heaven, which seems

tangible to no one but him. He slowly gives us his

perceived account while inserting an archive of

philosophical tidbits, which often divert the reader"s

attention from the supposed plot.

Dante claims himself gifted and says that all his said

experiences are ones that he encountered first-hand.

And so the reader is assumed to believe that the

author is not in a make-believe world and his

arguments with heavenly beings are actually

marvelous adventures. The theme is not relevant at

all to the present, as scholars today would say that

his ideas are primitive and unsubstantial. The only

thing applicable to today be the fact that it is based

on the timeless issue: the afterlife. And as he inserts

his personal views in life, he does it in an

authoritative method as his heavenly friends explain

them to him. Now if the reader assumes this is all

make-believe, it is tiresome to go on as the book is

direly detailed. On the other hand, if the reader

believes Dante"s account, then I am afraid he is very

misled. As many biblical verses are inserted in the

text, it is quite bothersome that his explanations and

fabulous stories take on a less dogmatic direction. It

doesn"t seem right to quote religion to serve both

misinterpreted purposes and claims to a divine

philosophy. This dissenting view is the only social

impact I can make out of the book. As I read on the

translated verses looking for some conflict or climax,

I reached neither. It just seems as if this popularly

supposed story is intended to be educational just like

a textbook. Nevertheless, it is not hard to see why

Paradiso was dubbed a masterpiece. If the title of

"masterpiece" is labeled upon the works of great

worth, I am afraid entertainment value is not

something distinguishable in this case even if there

is an undoubtedly enormous amount of effort, skill,

and thought that was invested in it. All the lines rhyme

in pairs, and are written in deep Spanish. A rhyme

scheme is followed and even literary formality is

observed. Dante is obviously intellectual, as his work

shows. It boasts of great depth and cerebral

capacity. Although more factual than proverbial, this

display of intelligence clearly shows that Paradiso

has a high prerequisite for understanding. His words

and narration appeal to the emotions as well, as

detailed work almost regularly accomplishes. He

describes his feelings of awe, curiosity, and

incapability as a mortal to comprehend the ways of

the divine in words so deep, so brief, and yet so filled

with his emotional intent. Why all of these good traits

still fail to interest the reader is possibly the effect of

the fact that Paradiso is written to contain Dante"s

thoughts and meaning and not ours. And so, as with

most other things, it is the creator who appreciates

his fruit the most.

I may be counted among those who appreciate only

the effort, but not the fruit. I find Paradiso to be a thick

pulp of philosophical fragments. It is a narrative

nothing and yet has room for controversy. It has all

the elements of a commendable story without a

commendable story line. I would not recommend it to

anyone except those who have a lot of time on their

hands, as I deduce it to be a waste of time.


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