‘Ad me’ah ve-hamishim
Notes on the Teaching of Hebrew and Jewish Studies at Ca’ Foscari, from 1950 to Today
The teaching of Hebrew at Ca’ Foscari officially began in 1965, under the guidance of Franco Michelini Tocci and continued until today thanks to researchers and professors specialised in Bible Studies, as well as modern Hebrew, Israeli culture and Jewish Studies more generally. Earlier than that, the early ’50s had seen the birth of a short-lived Hebrew lettorato taught by two rabbis, Elio Toaff and Leone Leoni, thanks to an agreement between Ca’ Foscari and the Union of the Italian Jewish Communities. Basing upon archival documents and interviews with some of the people involved, this essay aims to reconstruct the development of the teaching of Hebrew and Jewish Studies at the University of Venice, contextualising it within the history of Italian Orientalism and that of the Jews of Italy in the period that goes from 1950 to today.