There are several dialogues at stake here simultaneously: A dialogue between long-standing friends and colleagues; a dialogue with antiquity in the spirit of the “Renaissance,” a dialogue between contemporary readers and pre-modern texts, and finally a dialogue between Christians and Jews in early modern Europe. Texts under discussion will include those of the Italian Jews Judah Messer Leon (c. 1420-c. 1497) and Simone Luzzatto (1583-1663), and those of the Protestants Johannes Buxtorf (1564-1629) and Joseph Scaliger (1540-1609).


Anthony Grafton is the Henry Putnam University Professor of History and the Humanities at Princeton. His books include Joseph Scaliger: A Study in the History of Classical Scholarship (Oxford, 1983-93); Christianity and the Transformation of the Book (Harvard, 2006); and Worlds Made by Words (Harvard, 2008). He is currently at work on a study of histories of Christianity in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Europe and (with Joanna Weinberg) on a study of Isaac Casaubon’s Judaic studies.


David B. Ruderman is the Joseph Meyerhoff Professor of Modern Jewish History and the Ella Darivoff Director of the Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.  He is the author of many books inclu1ding, Kabbalah, Magic, and Science: The Cultural Universe of a Sixteenth-Century Jewish Physician (Harvard UP, 1988); Connecting the Covenants: Judaism and the Search for Christian Identity in Eighteenth-Century England (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007) and Early Modern Jewry: A New Cultural History (Princeton, 2010).