Love in the Italian Renaissance: From Dante to Tasso

History | Literature

Course Description

Love can be seen as a defining feature of what it means to be human—it motivates us and wounds us, can give meaning to our lives or  leave us in despair. As relational beings we seek to love and be loved by those in our lives. This is no more evident than in the works of the poets, authors, and philosophers of the Italian Renaissance, who were fascinated by the meaning of love. 

This course will explore the ideals of Italian humanism and try to understand how love was depicted and experienced at this seminal moment. Why was there such a division in perceptions of love, with some seeing it as an illness to be overcome and others as a means of transcendence and apotheosis? Did these authors classify love as an experience thrust upon us without our control, or see it as an emotion that could be tempered? Does the nature of the love depicted, whether mutual or unrequited, change the impact of the work? What are the implications of writing works of love dedicated to someone who does not requite it? Finally, how did the sharing of ideas, and the patronage by the wealthy, help foster a culture that critically engaged with, and expressed, such personal aspects of life? 

We will read and bring into dialogue Dante, Catherine of Siena, Boccaccio, Petrarch, Ficino, Ariosto, Tasso, and more, to gain a better understanding of the impact that love had on art and culture in this famous period of European history.

Please note that this course has a maximum enrollment of 18 students and that TMI does not allow participants to audit courses for free. 

Course Details

Location: Atwater or Online

First Session: Thursday, September 21st, 2023

Course Length: 12 weeks, Thursdays, 6:15 to 8:15 p.m.

Discussion Team:  Giovanna D’Alesio, Nusia Matura, Joseph Vietri   

Degree Credit: 3.0 credits

Course Fee: 

$150.00 (standard tuition)
$100.00 (promotion for new students)

Administrative Fee:



$185.00 (standard tuition)
$135.00 (promotion for new students)

Course fees are refundable in full before the second session. After the second session, a fee of $50 for the withdrawal will be applied. Refunds will not be issued after the third session. Please note that non-attendance does not constitute a withdrawal.

Students pursuing studies for credit are encouraged to consult with their advisers as they register for courses.

Course leaders, and students wishing to use credit vouchers, should call (514) 935-9585 to pay by phone or to schedule an appointment to pay in person.

Fill the following form to register

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