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The Inferno by Dante Alighieri - Barron's Booknotes
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CANTO XI

When Dante and Virgil reach the brink of the Seventh Circle,
the stink so overpowers Dante that he falls behind a rock for
relief. Virgil takes this recess time to explain the structure of
Hell. Because of the allegorical nature of the poems structure,
the geography lesson will also be an ethics lesson.



Dante's concept of ethics comes primarily from the Greek
philosopher Aristotle who saw three types of wrong behavior:
uncontrolled appetite (Incontinence); perverted appetite
(Bestiality); and the abuse of human faculties, especially that
of reason (Malice). Dante blends these classical ethical
categories with the specifically Christian sins of nonbelief
(paganism) and wrong-belief (heresy) to devise his scheme of
the pit.

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The Inferno by Dante Alighieri - Barron's Booknotes
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