Female Voice - Male Rhetoric (Inferno V)
Dept. of Italian, University of Melbourne
We do not encounter many female characters in the 'Comedy', and this is particularly true of the first cantica, so it is significant that Francesca is, in the poem, the very first soul who speaks, just as it is significant that the first theme to be explored is courtly love. The aim of this article is to discuss Dante's reasons for choosing to explore the theme of courtly love from a female perspective, as this procedure is unusual in the literature of the times, as it is in Dante's case also.
Coassin, Flavia 1994. Female Voice - Male Rhetoric (Inferno V), 'Spunti e Ricerche' , vol. 9, 45-55.