This piece is inspired first by my love for Dante’s writings, but more importantly for “Emancipation Again,” this piece responds to an exciting new area of Dante studies. The recent work of University of Pittsburgh professor Dennis Looney has uncovered the untold story of collaboration and dialogue between the US and the emerging nation of Italy in the mid 19th century. While our country was struggling to remain whole in the violence of the Civil War, Italy was struggling to unite many separate countries on the Italian peninsula into a single nation. We often forget that the modern nation of Italy is younger the US. Ironically, a country with thousands of years of history, reaching back before the Romans, was formed as nation in the 1860’s.