Often Right, Often Concise,
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This review is from: The Divine Comedy (Hardcover)
Clive James is right about the disparity between the English and Italian languages - the equivalent word, calzolaio, in English, cobblers, is about five vowels short.
James translates The Inferno with ease and assurance, and brings the babbling quality of Italian to English literature.
James's mission to demystify one of the great works of literature may not endear him to high circles of scholarship; but it brings Italian literature to the masses which is surely a good thing.
The text itself is good value for money - Dante has been a favourite of writers for years and it's easy to see why with lines like: "and the insane applauds himself." Hell is the most fun bit and there is great philosophy here. A great primer for the real thing - if you're lucky enough to speak Italian!!!!