Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Christian-Jewish Relations In the Middle Ages According to Primary Sources

At Seton Hall University in New Jersey:

The Department of Catholic Studies is pleased to present a lecture in its Medieval Catholicism Lecture Series, entitled "Christian-Jewish Relations in the Middle Ages according to Primary Sources: Nicolas Donin and the Paris Talmud Trial of 1240." The lecture will be presented by Piero Cappelli, Ph.D., Professor of Hebrew Language and Literature at Ca' Foscari University in Venice, Italy, and Visiting Professor of History at Johns Hopkins University.

The lecture will be held on Thursday, April 11 at 4 p.m. in The Walsh Library’s Beck Rooms A and B. This event is free of charge and open to the public. Light refreshments to follow.

About the Lecture

The thirteenth century marked a turning point in the relationship between Christians and Jews. In a single decade, from 1230-1240, the status of the Jews and Judaism in the Holy Roman Empire and in the other Christian kingdoms of Europe was transformed and defined for several centuries to come. These events can be viewed and understood through the prism of one man: Nicolas Donin, the convert from Judaism who acted as the prosecutor in the first public trial against the Talmud in Paris in 1240. This lecture will explain how and why Nicolas Donin stood at the crossroads of religious and political developments in his lifetime, according to primary sources. The lecture will expand the analysis from the intellectual discourse to its application in the 13th century politics.

About the Lecturer

Piero Capelli is an Associate Professor of Hebrew Language and Literature at Ca' Foscari University, Venice, Italy, and a Visiting Associate Professor of History at Johns Hopkins University. He is currently the Primo Levi Fellow at the Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. Professor Capelli's research interests are focused in the history of texts and ideas in late antiquity and medieval Judaism, especially in the Greek pseudepigrapha, in Hebrew and Aramaic rabbinic literature, and in medieval Jewish-Christian intellectual polemics. His most recent book is a history of the conceptual field of evil in Judaism from the Bible to early Qabbalah (Il male, Florence 2013). He is currently working on the first critical edition of the Hebrew account of the public trial held against the Talmud in Paris in 1240, which results he will share with us in this lecture.

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