The Musical Heritage of Al-Andalus  book cover
1st Edition

The Musical Heritage of Al-Andalus

ISBN 9780367243142
Published December 31, 2020 by Routledge
272 Pages 17 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

The Musical Heritage of Al-Andalus is a critical account of the history of Andalusian music in Iberia from the Islamic conquest of 711 to the final expulsion of the Moriscos (Spanish Muslims converted to Christianity) in the early 17th century. This volume presents the documentation that has come down to us, accompanied by critical and detailed analyses of the sources written in Arabic, Old Catalan, Castilian, Hebrew, and Latin. It is also informed by research the author has conducted on modern Andalusian musical traditions in Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Lebanon and Syria.

While the cultural achievements of medieval Muslim Spain have been the topic of a large number of scholarly and popular publications in recent decades, what may arguably be its most enduring contribution – music – has been almost entirely neglected. The overarching purpose of this work is to elucidate as clearly as possible the many different types of musical interactions that took place in medieval Iberia and the complexity of the various borrowings, adaptations, hybridizations, and appropriations involved.

Table of Contents

Section One: Music in Iberia and the Mashriq up to 711

Chapter 1 – Music in Iberia to 711

Chapter 2 – Arab music to 711

Section Two: Andalusi Music to the Fall of the Umayyad Caliphate, 7111031

Chapter 3 – From the conquest to the reign of ‘Abd al-Raḥmān II, 711–822

Chapter 4 – ‘Abd al-Raḥmān II and Ziryāb, 822–852

Chapter 5 – The final years of the Caliphate, 858–1031

Section Three: Music in the Medieval Mediterranean

Chapter 6 – Instrumentarium

Chapter 7 – Music Theory and Performance Practices  

Section Four: The Musical Revolution in al-Andalus

Chapter 8 – From Ṣawt to Muwashshaḥ

Chapter 9 – Hebrew Muwashshaḥāt

Section Five: Post-Umayyad Iberia (11th17th c.)

Chapter 10 – The Era of the "Petty Kings," Almoravids, and Almohads (11th–12th c.)

Chapter 11 – The Age of Minstrels (13th –15th c.)

Chapter 12 – Music of the Moriscos (16th–17th c.)


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Dwight F. Reynolds is Professor of Arabic Language and Literature at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and author of numerous publications, including the co-editorship of our own award-winning The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music, Volume 6: The Middle East, published in 2002, with Virginia Danielson and Scott Marcus.