Presence of Antisemitism in the Catholic world.

The case of the «Enciclopedia Cattolica» (1948-1954)

This paper enquires into the survival of the nineteenth-twentieth century anti-Jewish culture in Italy following the Shoah, in a specific cultural milieu, that of the «Enciclopedia Cattolica», published in twelve volumes from 1948 to 1954. While the more overt features of traditional anti-Semitism disappeared in Italy following 1945, avoiding its extrinsic characteristics, anti-Jewish stereotypes and images were practically untouched by a critical reappraisal, at least until the beginning of the Second Vatican Council, and were instead even proposed anew in theological, religious and cultural circles. This anti-Jewish ‘survivor’ will be investigated in the course of the paper by examining several entries contained in the «Enciclopedia» project.

issue 01 / April 2010 by Elena Mazzini