Observatory on Dante Studies


The promoter and coordinator of the Observatory on Dante Studies is dr. Gandolfo Cascio.

Below you can read his resume regarding activities around Dante. To view the full profile, click here.

His research regarding Dantean matters can be divided into two main strands that are interconnected with each other, namely the reception of the Comedy, and the relationship of the medieval poet with modern and contemporary writers.
On these issues, he has presented papers at conferences, has published several articles and has authored the monographs Un’idea di letteratura nella “Commedia” (Società Editrice Dante Alighieri, 2015), which has then been translated into Dutch as Een idee van literatuur in Dantes “Komedie” (IIC, 2021); and Dolci detti. Dante, la letteratura e i poeti (Marsilio, 2021).
Most recently, he edited the volume Rivolti al monte. Studi sul Purgatorio dantesco (Marsilio, 2023) that collects a selection of the papers presented during the homonymous conference.
At present – combining his expertise as a reception historian, Dante scholar and translator – he is engaged in an annotated version into Italian of the Dante essays that Giuseppe Antonio Borgese wrote during his American years.

Teaching at Utrecht University
In the academic years 2006-2009 he has been involved in the courses on medieval literature and the Trecento; and in the period 2010-2011 and 2014-2017 he co-teached the course Dante e La Divina Commedia. The following year he designed the course Dante’s Afterlives: testi e ricezione, which he has been coordinating and teaching ever since.
The course is attended primarily by UU undergraduates in the literary track in Italian studies, but is also enrolled by UU undergraduates in literary studies and Erasmus students who choose it as an elective.

Cascio mentors UU graduate students in literary and medieval studies during their internships, and also, in collaborations with their sending universities, international PhD candidates (see here).

Visiting Professorships
He has also been visiting professor of Dante Studies at School of Catholic Theology of Tilburg University (2018-2020), and at Leiden University (2009-2022).

Network and knowledge exchange

  • Società Dantesca Italiana, Florence: ordinary associate
  • Centre for Dante Studies in Ireland (CDSI), University College Cork: associate member
  • Seminario Internazionale di Studi Danteschi (SISD), University of Barcelona: member
  • Incontri Danteschi, Capri: member

Community engagement and dissemination
Since 2005, he has been giving lectures, talks and presentations at various institutions (Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Volksuniversiteit, Società Dante Alighieri, public libraries).
From 2016 to 2018 he was responsible for the scientific supervision of the international project Lectura Dantis Europaea (Italy, UK, Germany) and lectured in Lucca (Palazzo Alexander), Florence (Santa Maria Novella), Ravenna (Centro Dantesco dei Frati Minori Conventuali) and Verona (Centro Scaligero degli Studi Danteschi).
In 2021, he has chaired the Werkgroep Italië Studies “Dante 2021” committee in honor of the seventh centennial of the Poet’s death; and has also served as scientific referee of the latest Dutch translation of the Divine Comedy.

In 2023 he organized the yearly Dantedì (Dante Day) edition at the Istituto Italiano di Cultura in Amsterdam.


  • 2016, Utrecht University, ICON, Talentontwikkeling programme: starting grant
  • 2021​​​​, Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: translation grant
  • 2021, Utrecht University, ICON: conference grant
  • 2021, Istituto Italiano di Cultura: conference grant
  • 2021, Società Dante Alighieri (Amsterdam and Utrecht): travel grant
  • 2023, Istituto Italiano di Cultura: publication grant

– 2017: shortlisted for the Onderzoeksprijs with Un’idea di letteratura nella “Commedia”.
– 2021: Nino Martoglio Prize for non-fiction to Dolci detti. Dante, la letteratura e i poeti.

Meeting Dante in Ravenna (2017).