Hasmik Vardanyan: Dante and the modern Armenian literature INVITE Blog / INVITE scientific achievements

The series dedicated to the scientific achievements by our INVITE fellows continues. Here we have the presentation by Hasmik Vardayan about Dante’s influence on modern Armenian literature.

Dante’s influence on modern Armenian poets

In the field of Dante’s studies, there has never been realized a complete study to find out the influence of Dante in the works of the modern Armenian poets.

My research offers an introduction to this rich topic, also presenting for the first time a comparative study between the Armenian poems (many of which have never been translated or presented in other languages) and the original text of the Inferno of Dante, in this way demonstrating Italy’s great poet’s remarkable influence in the modern Armenian literature.

Apart the literary study, my research also includes a historical and political aspect, which is especially relevant in the current geopolitical situation. In particular, it refers to the two World Wars with the following establishment of new boarders and spheres of influences, the Armenian Genocide and the continuous ethnic cleansing in the historical Armenian regions currently underway and the literary interpretation of the political situation on the model of Dante’s Inferno.

My research focuses on the presence of Dante-character and Dante-poet in poems which describe real historical events, all written in the first half of the 20th century and all having a strong interconnection among each other and the first canticle of the Divine Comedy.

My participation in conferences

During my research project, I could participate in the conference «L’ombra sua torna» 2020: Dante, il Novecento e oltre, organised by Departamento de Estudios Románicos, Franceses, Italianos y Traducción of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (Spain), held online from 19.04.2021 to 21.02.2021 and I have been invited to take part also in the conference proceedings to be published in 2022.

I also participated in the conference Traduzioni, tradizioni e rivisitazioni dell’opera di Dante, organised by the Università degli Studi di Bergamo (Italy), held online from 13.05.2021 to 15.05.2021

I also followed numerous seminars dedicated to Dante at the University of Verona (Italy), at the University of Basel (Switzerland) and at the University of Notre Dame (United States).

The benefit of being part of the INVITE programme

The INVITE project gave me a unique opportunity to realize my research project “Dante in the Armenian Literature of 20th century” under the supervision of an excellent professor, Paolo Pellegrini, who was always ready to help me to overcome the difficulties I came across during my PhD.

I also got acquainted with brilliant professors in Dante Studies field whose advice enriched my research capacities and knowledge. It is also important to emphasize the international environment of the INVITE project that offered me a broader view on the topic of my study and brought a lot of wonderful friends in my life from all over the world. I had a chance to have a research period in the USA, that was unfortunately interrupted because of the Covid 19 pandemics, yet I could follow some seminars and have a look in the rich university library catalogue. I also could participate to some international conferences and help my supervisor organize one in my home university, which also was a very good experience for my curriculum. The three years I spent in the University of Verona were definitely worth it.