Out of Babylon: The Ffigura of Exile in Tasso and Petrarch (Critical Essay) - Annali d'Italianistica

Out of Babylon: The Ffigura of Exile in Tasso and Petrarch (Critical Essay)

By Annali d'Italianistica

  • Release Date - Published: 2002-01-01
  • Book Genre: Language Arts & Disciplines
  • Author: Annali d'Italianistica
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Out of Babylon: The Ffigura of Exile in Tasso and Petrarch (Critical Essay) Annali d'Italianistica read online review & book description:

Thomas Peterson, in "Out of Babylon: The Figura of Exile in Tasso and Petrarch," focuses on two highly representative figures of early Humanism and the late Renaissance, thereby showing the extent to which the metaphoricsymbolic notion and poetics of exile continued and evolved throughout the centuries. Approaching the topic of exile in Petrarch and Tasso intertextually, Peterson argues for a redemptive return on the part of the principal characters of the Rerum vulgarium fragmenta and the Gerusalemme liberata from Babylon back to Jerusalem: namely, to a life of religious devotion and sacred community. The differences in literary genre--Peterson argues--do not present an obstacle but rather an opportunity to study similar "figural" presentations of the "battle of the soul" in Petrarch and Tasso. By examining the lexical and thematic incidences of exile in these two authors' masterpieces, Peterson is thus able to draw parallels between the life changes of Tasso's heroes (and the Christian army) and the transformation of Petrarch's "lover at a distance" into a Davidic singer in religious retreat and contemplation. By focusing on shared elements in the works, from stylistics and rhetorical dispositio to the Augustinean problem of the will and the historical-prophetic mission of the Church, Peterson demonstrates the sacred role of poetry in the vision of the two poets as a means to guide the individual sinner, as well as the community, out of the earthly bondage. [....] agnos in uinculis, Christum denique exulem [...] (1) 1

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