MES 381 • MUSIC CULTURES OF THE MIDDLE EAST: PAST AND PRESENT
2:00 PM-5:00 PM
This graduate seminar is an historical and ethnomusicological exploration of the music cultures of the Middle East. It has two main aims: to familiarize students with the characteristics and diversity of Middle Eastern music; and to examine a set of questions touching on the social and cultural aspects of musical life and expression in the past and present. The course surveys the features and historical development of the musical theories, modes, instruments, genres, repertoires, performance styles, aesthetic notions, and attitudes toward music and musicians in the three primary musical cultures the Arab, Turkish, and Persian. It also explores the major transformations in the music cultures of the region brought about during the modern period by forces such as Western influences, technological innovations, state policies, socioeconomic changes, and ideological shifts. In its overall approach the seminar is geared to the study of both the musical sound and the contexts and behaviors associated with it. Specially prepared listening tapes accompany the readings to illustrate the music. Aspects of theory and performances will be demonstrated on Middle Eastern instruments in the classroom.
***** THIS COURSE HAS BEEN CANCELLED*****
Book reviews 20% Journals 25% Research essay 40% Class participation 15%
J. During, The Art of Persian Music (1991) V. Danielson, The Voice of Egypt : Umm Kulthum, Arabic Song (1997) A. Shiloah, Music in the World of Islam: A Socio-Cultural Study (1995) H. Touma, The Music of the Arabs (1996) M. Stokes, The Arabesk Debate: Music and Musicians in Modern Turkey (1992) A course reader including writings by ethnomusicologists, music historians, and anthropologists