Public Events

NHC Virtual Book Talk: In a Dark Wood: What Dante Taught Me About Grief, Healing, and the Mysteries of Love

April 22, 2020

book cover When you lose your whole world in a moment, where do you turn?

On a cold November morning, Bard College professor Joseph Luzzi found himself racing to the hospital—his wife, Katherine, eight-and-a-half months pregnant, had been in a horrible car accident. In an instant, Luzzi became both a widower and a first-time father.

In the aftermath of unthinkable tragedy, Luzzi relied on the support of his Italian immigrant family to grieve and care for his infant daughter. But it wasn’t until he turned to the Divine Comedy—a poem he had devoted his life to studying and teaching—that he learned how to resurrect his life, passing from his own grief-stricken Inferno through the Purgatory of healing, and ultimately stepping into the Paradise of rediscovered love. In a Dark Wood is a beautifully written hybrid of heartrending memoir and a meditation on the power of great art to give us strength in our darkest moments.

Listen to a podcast of this talk.

Watch the livestream recording.