Dante’s World

This looks likes a wondrous exhibition. It’s exciting to see the level of engagement and re-elaboration of Dante’s work across media at the moment.

The exhibition of Rachel Owen’s new illustrations of the Inferno at Pembroke College, Oxford, represents another rich addition to this tradition.


Part of this must certainly be to do with this particular temporal sweet spot, between the 750th anniversary of Dante’s birth (which we celebrated in 2015) and the 700th anniversary of his death (to come in 2021), but this isn’t the only explanation.

Dante’s have been a source texts for visual, musical and new literary art for centuries, something I’ve written about elsewhere, and it’s rewarding, as a researcher, to see the everliving and developing nature of his artistic legacy.

Ordered Universe

A new exhibition opens in Durham this week, at the Palace Green Library Galleries. Curated by Annalisa Cipollone Dante: Hell, Heaven and Hope – A Journey through Life and the After-Life with Danteopens on Saturday 2nd December 2017, and runs until early March 2018. Following Dante’s poem The Divine Comedy with its tour through Hell, Purgatory and Paradise, the exhibition features rare manuscripts of Dante’s work, printed copies and artistic responses to one of the greatest imaginative achievements of the Middle Ages. 

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Journey to Women and the Canon

Julia reflecting on the journey to our conference back in January and looking forward to the ongoing work of our new TORCH & Balliol Interdisciplinary Institute Research Newtork

Gender & Authority

‘Women and the Canon’ was a two-day interdisciplinary conference held in January 2016 at Oxford. The conference was attended by over a hundred people, coming from a wide range of countries and backgrounds, and it gave birth to Gender & Authority, a research network sponsored by TORCH and the Balliol Interdisciplinary Fund. In this blog post Julia Hartley goes over the journey that led to the creation of this exciting new research platform.


The idea of ‘Women and the Canon’ came first as an intuition, and I did not realize back then the project’s importance, the collaborators it would attract, nor the interest and enthusiasm it would elicit.

My interest in the intersection of gender and artistic and intellectual authority began with a canonical male author, Marcel Proust. In spring 2014 I was re-reading the chapter of In Search of Lost Time entitled ‘Autour de Mme Swann’ when I noticed…

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