The Italian Studies Program at Muhlenberg College organizes various speakers, events and engagements throughout the academic year. See below for examples of previous events hosted by Italian Studies.



"The Silk Tallit: A Story of Jewish-Italian Rediscovery & Entrepreneurship"

Tues. 9 Nov. 2021



Dora and Sofia Piperno grew up in a Jewish family in Rome, Italy. In 2016 the two sisters founded a company with a very particular business plan: to resurrect the lost Jewish-Italian tradition of silk tallit manufacturing, and market their products to a global public.

The tallit (pl: tallitot) is a Jewish ritual prayer shawl, and the Jews of Italy had a long tradition of making exquisitely crafted and ornate tallitot out of fine Italian silk and embroidery; however, this art had been lost during the tumultuous 20th century.

After extensive historical research, the Piperno sisters decided to found a company, Talled di Seta, that produces magnificent tallitot out of fine Italian silk according to the ancient practice. They will share with us the centuries-old tradition of Jewish silk textile art and production in Italy, the Jewish-Italian custom of silk tallitot, and the ins and outs of creating a business that produces and markets a high-quality local product on a global scale.