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Event Details

Thu, October 26, 2017

18:00 – 19:00

Villa La Pietra
Via Bolognese, 120
50139 Firenze, Italy

Are today´s Muslims Europe’s “new Jews”? Is Islamophobia the same as, or an aspect of, Antisemitism? Controversy over this question has raged over the last decade or so. From a historical point of view, is there a dynamic relationship between Antisemitism and Islamophobia and, if so, how has it evolved over time and space? Religion, empire, nation-building and war, they have all played their part in the complex evolution of this relationship. What does Europe have to say about the fact that Jews and Arabs were once called Semites, but are now widely thought to be on two different sides of the “War on Terror”?

Historian James Renton and the EU Coordinator on Combatting Antisemitism, Katharina von Schnurbein, will debate the relationship btween the two racisms and Europe’s response to it.

Moderated by Marcella Simoni, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Moderator

LPD – Contemporary Jewish Studies



Featured Biographies

James Renton


Dr. James Renton is Reader in History at Edge Hill University and Visiting Fellow at the European University Institute,  here he serves as Academic Consulting Editor at MONITOR: Global Intelligence on Racism. He is co-editor with Ben Gidley of Antisemitism and Islamophobia in Europe: A Shared Story? (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017). Previous publications include The Zionist Masquerade: The Birth of the Anglo-Zionist Alliance, 1914-1918 (Palgrave Macmillan, 2007).

Marcella Simoni


Marcella Simoni , Ph.D. (London 2004), lectures at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice. Between 2004 and 2010 she taught at NYU in Florence. Her field of expertise is the Middle East in general and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in particular about which she has published a number of books and articles in various scientific journals ; among them «Middle Eastern Studies», «Jewish History», «Passato e Presente» and others. She is currently working on the history of conscientious objection in Israel. She is also in the board of two journals “Passato e Presente” and “Quest – Issues in contemporary Jewish history”. Since 1998 she has extensive experience lecturing in international conferences and forums. Her research interests include civil society in Israeli-Palestinian history, history of medicine, and youth. She speaks English and Hebrew fluently and her Arabic reaches an intermediate level.