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The Inferno of Dante

By: Dante Alighieri,Robert Pinsky - translator
Narrated by: Seamus Heaney,Frank Bidart,Louise Glück,Robert Pinsky
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Summary

Robert Pinsky's new verse translation of the Inferno makes it clear to the contemporary listener, as no other in English has done, why Dante is universally considered a poet of great power, intensity, and strength. This critically acclaimed translation was awarded the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Poetry and the Harold Morton Landon Translation Award given by the Academy of American Poets. Well versed, rapid, and various in style, the Inferno is narrated by Pinsky and three other leading poets: Seamus Heaney, Frank Bidart, and Louise Glück.

©1994 Robert Pinsky (P)2014 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about The Inferno of Dante

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A very mixed bag

A great translation by Pinksky, but he is a distracting narrator. Worse still is Louise Gluck. I don't know her poetry, but she reads in a voice so affectless that it sometimes sounds almost like Stephen Hawking's computer. Seamus Heaney is wonderful though - a pity he couldn't have recorded the whole thing.

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Not the best version of this book.

Lousie Glück made me want to pass out with boredom. Each of the other narrators had an ok delivery, relatively interesting and such, but Glück read in the most monotone, dreary and sole-destroying way that every part she read was ruined. I struggled very hard to actually listen to what was being said – easy to hear her, just so difficult to concentrate when there is no emphasis or enthusiasm behind her words.

The others’ parts did the book justice and kept me listening. Unfortunately, however, all of the parts sounded like they were recorded in a call center. The quality of the sound was just awful – a subtle low murmuring in the background kept grabbing my attention. Unacceptable and just seems amateurish.

I assumed the different narrators would be reading different characters but instead the readers took it in turns to deliver different chapters. This kind of struck me as odd.

Lastly, they only did the first book – so any continuation of the story will need to be switched to different readers, which feels a bit inconsistent.

Much better off to get the full “Divine Comedy” to begin with, I wish I had and will be returning to do just that.

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Best translation

The best translation of Inferno. Somehow too it works having the 4 different poets read. Yes Louise Gluck has an affectless delivery - but its done on purpose to give a sense of the doomful mood of hell. Heaney and Pinsky wonderful - and translation sings.

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Pinsky translation of Dante’s inferno

Great translation. Some brilliant readings but bit mixed Swamy’s Heaney the star turn great that he read the last part

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  • craig
  • 14-09-15

A great translation of the epic.

The performance would have been better if there was only 1 reader. The only reader I didn't care for was the female who was very monotone and just a distraction from the story.

The inferno itself is a great source not just to hear about Hell and the different punishment people get for their sins. it is also a great source regarding the Religious politics that accrued in Dantes time and how he viewed Florance itself. most of the damn are based on real people of Dantes time so while reading or hearing be sure to look up and understand who these people were. a great story for anyone interested in the subject.

11 people found this helpful

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  • Gabriella Garland
  • 21-06-17

Intriguing story but…

I fell in love with the story and most of the narrators were able to bring this epic to life. The females voice was too monotone and made it distracting for me to truly get the full experience. Another small detail that irritated me was the way she put too much emphasis oh the "w" in words such as"whipped" or "whirled". She was also choppy on many of her sentences. She would often add commas where a comma was not necessary. Her voice was overall distracting and did not do this epic justice. Other than that listening to this was an amazing experience and I will be sure to share this experience with others

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  • 0rion
  • 18-08-18

Classic story, horrid narration

Each section has a different narrator and out of the first four only one was acceptable the others sounded like disinterested first time read throughs. The inflection was abysmal and the tone monotonous and disinterested as if they were being forced to read it in front of a class. I couldn't even finish listening to this rendition.

On the plus side I liked the dramatic music between chapters.

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  • jmf
  • 14-08-18

the woman ruins the story!!!!!!!

Not sure why they thought it would be a good idea to use 5 narrators. She sounds like a brainwashed robot from a sci-fi movie. TERRIBLE! find a different version!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 18-12-18

I had a hard time not falling asleep

Both readers are very monotone, I really had a hard time following the story, wich is a shame

1 person found this helpful

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  • Chey
  • 27-07-18

Monotone

The performers are the worst Ive heard. Too distracting to get past Chapter 3. What a shame.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-08-15

Brilliant poetry, obsessively political

Perhaps if Dante had anticipated that his readership would extend across the globe and into the 21st century, he would not have imagined the moral order of the Universe having so quite much to do with Florentine politics during Dante's own era.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Ryan
  • 02-08-15

great book, I enjoy it over and over

i loved the book, listening to a good classic is always a great cho8ce for a long trip.

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  • Lamar A Johnson
  • 21-10-22

Dante

This book is wonderful, absolutely amazing.. Though it was written many of many years ago and that it is a " Comady " To me there is alot of points that was hit on that I have not heard or read if anyone else.

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  • SN
  • 16-10-22

Audio quality could be better

Musical interludes between cantos adds a dramatic flair but the voice quality is degraded. I listen on iPad with a JBL Charge 5 speaker and though I have excellent hearing in the voice range, it’s sometimes requires straining to make out some of the words. This appears to be because of the frequencies of the narrator’s voice.
Otherwise it’s good.