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.
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.