The Italian Almanac

Dante Alighieri

Italian News - February 8

Dante Alighieri Manila is the first Filipino branch of Società Dante Alighieri, one of the most prestigious Italian nonprofit cultural organizations. Founded in Rome in 1889, more than a century ago, the mission of Dante has always been to disseminate the Italian culture all over the world. Today the Società Dante Alighieri encompasses a network of over 3,300 language schools and cultural centers in all regions worldwide-75 in Africa, 2,100 in the Americas, 840 in Europe, 212 in Oceania and only 42 are in Asia.

Dante’s mission and activities are similar to those of the Goethe Institut, the Alliance Française, the British Council, the Instituto Camoes and the Instituto Cervantes. Together with these latter, Società Dante Alighieri has been awarded in 2005 the Prince of Asturias Prize in recognition of their efforts.

The organization is named after Dante Alighieri (Florence, 1265-1321) poet, philosopher, political thinker, and writer, is regarded as the Father of the Italian language and literature. He was the first to use the secular language in a work of high literary and moral content, The Divine Comedy. Together with Shakespeare and Goethé, Dante Alighieri is ranked among the greatest writers of the Western European Literature.

Dante Alighieri Manila is concerned with the promotion of all aspects of the Italian language, culture and art in this country. It is specialized on the teaching of Italian as a vehicle to enhance awareness and understanding of the Italian culture and lifestyle. Better knowledge of the language is an essential tool to know more about Italy, to facilitate contacts, and to strengthen relationships. In addition to its language courses, that have just started this week and will run regularly every two months, Dante Alighieri Manila, has also launched a series of Italian cooking lessons.