Department of Music

The Muwashshah: History, Origins and Present Practices
London, October 2004


CALL FOR PAPERS

Papers are invited for an International Weekend Conference on

THE MUWASHSHAH
History, Origins and Present Practices
to be held at the the School of Oriental and African Studies
University of London, Thornhaugh Square, London WC1
Friday 8 October - Sunday 10 October 2004

Full details at: http://www.geocities.com/muwashshah


OUTLINE

>> The song form known as the muwashshah has a 1,000-year history in and around the
Mediterranean basin. It originated in Andalus, where it was cultivated by both Arabic
and Jewish poets and musicians. It enjoyed cult status in its time. Nowadays the
muwashshah is still a widely enjoyed musical form throughout the Arab world, and
preserves forms which go back to its Andalusian origins.

>> The muwashshah and its associated verse-form, the zajal, had an important and
largely undocumented influence on the forms of poetry and song in the Christian West.
To some extent this has been examined in academic research on the kharjas of the
muwashshahaat. Other aspects, however, have remained as unexplored territory.

>> The purpose of our conference is to open new ground in this area of research, and
to examine a range of issues ranging from historical origins to present performance
practices of the muwashshah in countries such as Morocco where it is still very much
alive among both Arab and Jewish performers, and related forms such as the Tunisian
ma'luf.

>> The current list of speakers includes many protagonists of the Madrid [1989] and
Exeter [1990] "kharja" conferences. Our intention is to combine the presentation of
academic papers with live performance, concert performances and audio-visual
materials. Edited proceedings of the conference will be published in book form.

YOU ARE CORDIALLY INVITED TO ATTEND, AND TO OFFER TO PRESENT A PAPER.

>> Please send your contact details by e-mail to ed.emery@britishlibrary.net

or by post to:

Ed Emery [Muwashshah Conference], Peterhouse, Cambridge CB2 1RD, UK

or by fax to: 0044 [0] 870 133 0145

(Further information may also be had from Keith Howard: kh@soas.ac.uk)

Hosted by the AHRB Research Centre for Cross-Cultural Music and Dance Performance

and the AHRB Research Centre for Asian and African Languages

with support from the Jewish Music Institute

School of Oriental and African Studies [SOAS], University of London

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