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Speaking With the DeadExplorations in Literature and History$
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Jurgen Pieters

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780748615889

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748615889.001.0001

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Epilogue

Epilogue

Chapter:
(p.136) Epilogue
Source:
Speaking With the Dead
Author(s):

Jürgen Pieters

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748615889.003.0007

Before Petrarch, the conversation with the dead was located elsewhere – with Homer and Virgil – and, even with Petrarch's contemporary and fellow countryman Dante, the dialogue takes place in the Underworld. Petrarch wrote down his reflections on the conversation with the dead in the first half of the fourteenth century. To speak with the dead is to become aware of the productive force of what Hannah Arendt called the tears of remembrance, but also of the feeling of loss that is constitutive of all the memories. In general, the conversations conducted with the dead are a constant reminder of them.

Keywords:   dead, conversation, Petrarch, Homer, Virgil, Dante, Underworld, Hannah Arendt

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