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Among the Jasmine Trees

Music and Modernity in Contemporary Syria

Jonathan Holt Shannon

Publication Year: 2006

How does a Middle Eastern community create a modern image through its expression of heritage and authenticity? In Among the Jasmine Trees: Music and Modernity in Contemporary Syria, Jonathan H. Shannon investigates expressions of authenticity in Syria's musical culture, which is particularly known for embracing and preserving the Arab musical tradition, and which has seldom been researched in depth by Western scholars. Music plays a key role in the process of self-imaging by virtue of its ability to convey feeling and emotion, and Shannon explores a variety of performance genres, Sufi rituals, song lyrics, melodic modes, and aesthetic criteria. Shannon shows that although the music may evoke the old, the traditional, and the local, these are re-envisioned as signifiers of the modern national profile. A valuable contribution to the study of music and identity and to the ethnomusicology of the modern Middle East, Among the Jasmine Trees details this music and its reception for the first time, offering an original theoretical framework for understanding contemporary Arab culture, music, and society.

Published by: Wesleyan University Press

Title Page, Copyright Page

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pp. 2-9

Contents

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pp. 10-11

List of Figures

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pp. 12-13

A Note on Transliteration

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pp. 14-15

Preface

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pp. 16-29

Introduction: The Aesthetics of Authenticity in Contemporary Syria

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pp. 30-50

ONE: Among the Jasmine Trees

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pp. 51-80

TWO: Sentiment and Authentic Spirit: Composing Syrian Modernity

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pp. 81-111

THREE: Constructing Musical Authenticity: History,Cultural Memory, Emotion

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pp. 112-134

FOUR: Body Memory, Temporality, and Transformation in the Dhikr

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pp. 135-158

FIVE: Authentic Performance and the Performance of Authenticity

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pp. 159-186

SIX: Tarab, Sentiment, and Authenticity

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pp. 187-216

SEVEN: Notes Toward Closure

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pp. 217-228

Epilogue: 2000

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pp. 229-231

Notes

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pp. 232-255

Glossary of Selected Arabic Terms

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pp. 256-259

Selected Bibliography and Discography

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pp. 260-277

Index

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pp. 278-285


E-ISBN-13: 9780819569851
Print-ISBN-13: 9780819567987

Page Count: 288
Publication Year: 2006

Series Title: Music Culture

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Subject Headings

  • Music -- Social aspects -- Syria.
  • Music -- Syria -- 21st century -- Philosophy and aesthetics.
  • Syria -- Social life and customs -- 21st century.
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