The Thousand and One Nights does not fall into a scholarly canon or into the category of popular literature. It takes its place within a middle literature that circulated widely in medieval times. The
Nights gradually entered world literature through the great novels of the day and through music, cinema and other art forms. Material inspired by the
Nights has continued to emerge from many different countries, periods, disciplines and languages, and the scope of the
Nights has continued to widen, making the collection a universal work from every point of view. The essays in this volume scrutinize the expanse of sources for this monumental work of Arabic literature and follow the trajectory of the
Nights’ texts, the creative, scholarly commentaries, artistic encounters and relations to science. Contributors: Ibrahim Akel, Rasoul Aliakbari, Daniel Behar, Aboubakr Chraïbi, Anne E. Duggan, William Granara, Rafika Hammoudi, Dominique Jullien, Abdelfattah Kilito, Magdalena Kubarek, Michael James Lundell, Ulrich Marzolph, Adam Mestyan, Eyüp Özveren, Marina Paino, Daniela Potenza, Arafat Abdur Razzaque, Ahmed Saidy, Johannes Thomann and Ilaria Vitali.
The present volume consists of translated anecdotes, on musicological and socio-cultural topics, from al-Iṣbahānī’s
Kitāb al-Aghānī al-Kabīr (
The Grand Book of Songs) with annotations and commentaries. It deals with musical rhythmic and melodic modes, technical terms and treatises; music instruments; composition techniques and processes; education and oral/written transmissions; vocal and instrumental performances and their aesthetics; solo and ensemble music; change and its inevitability; musical and textual improvisations;
ṭarab and the acute emotions of joy or grief; medieval dances; social status. Though extracts from
The Grand Book of Songs have been translated in European languages since 1816, this work presents a much larger and more comprehensive scope that will benefit musicologists, medievalist and Middle Eastern scholars as well as the general reader.
Poet of Jordan, William Tamplin presents two decades’ worth of the political poetry of Muhammad Fanatil al-Hajaya, a Bedouin poet from Jordan and a public figure whose voice channels a popular strain of popular Arab political thought. Tamplin’s footnoted translations are supplemented with a biography, interviews, and pictures in order to contextualize the man behind the poetry.
The aesthetics and politics of vernacular Arabic poetry have long gone undervalued. By offering a close study of the life and work of Hajaya, Tamplin demonstrates the impact that one poet’s voice can have on the people and leaders of the contemporary Middle East.
The series offers a platform for studies in literature and the performing arts of the Muslim World at large, covering all periods (pre-modern to present day) and a wide variety of cultural traditions and languages (including, but not limited to, Arabic, Persian, Turkish, Urdu, and other Asian and African languages and practices). It draws scholars from various fields such as literature, theater, music and dance, folklore and epic, liturgy and rituals, cinema and media studies, and popular culture. It encourages and fosters comparative and interdisciplinary studies.
In addition to monographs, the series welcomes text editions and translations of significant primary texts, as well as thematic collections of articles.
The series has published an average of one title per year since 2014.