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Orlando Furioso and Early Italian Epic Theory
February 20, 2018 @ 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm
A Talk by Daniel Javitch (NYU)
Tue, 2/20 · 4:30 pm—6:00 pm · 106 McCormick
Although Ariosto’s Orlando Furioso was acknowledged to be a superior romance to the ones that preceded it, the poem was included in the disparagement of the genre and was regularly invoked as an example of what the epic poet ought not to do. These attacks against Ariosto’s bestseller might be said to define epic by negation, dwelling as they do on the failure of the Furioso to observe some of the epic requisites set down by Aristotle. In this lecture hosted by the Program in Italian Studies, Daniel Javitch will argue that, while the influence of the Poeticsis very discernible in the discourse about epic produced in Italy from the midcentury on, Ariosto’s actual and deviant practice is equally influential, and serves to generate rules which counter that practice.