Music in egypt experiencing music expressing culture

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music in egypt experiencing music expressing culture

Music in Egypt: Experiencing Music, Expressing Culture by Scott L. Marcus

Experiencing Music, Expressing Culture is a great series of books about music cultures all over the world. Eschewing the idea of a university world music survey course using a single textbook, the editors of this series instead offer a series of smaller books, each one covering the music of a specific region of the world. Id previously really enjoyed the volume of Music in Pacific Island Cultures, and now Ive just finished Music in Egypt.

Scott Marcus fits an incredible amount of information into this relatively slim book. In fact, at times I wondered if it might be too information-dense for use in a gen-ed university survey. This isnt a book that would teach itself; it would require a teacher who is comfortable with the material.

But an intriguing aspect of the books structure is how Marcus turns away from a simple chronological presentation of the information. Instead, the content keeps cycling around, moving back and forth through history. Even the recordings (on an accompanying CD) are referred to not just one time, but throughout the book, for different purposes and from different perspectives. I like how that structure conveys the sense that music traditions dont move in straight lines from beginning to end. Its a helpful lesson for any student/reader to be reminded of.

On the other hand, that nonchronological cycling through the information can be overwhelming to keep track of. What I missed in Marcuss book is a lot of clear background about Egypt itself, apart from its musical traditions. Because Im not extremely familiar with the history of the area, I was sometimes confused about what was happening at various times throughout Egypt and the region. More context would be appreciated.

But its a nice volume, and even just a surface read-through (that is, not doing all of the suggested extra activities) taught me about a lot of Egypts musical traditions, and especially changes through the 20th century. Helpful, intriguing, and perhaps a possibility for in-class use, depending on the situation.
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Published 25.11.2018

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Music in Egypt : experiencing music, expressing culture. Scott Lloyd Marcus. Music in Egypt is one of several case-study volumes that can be used along with Thinking Musically, the core book in the Global Music Series. Thinking Musically incorporates music from many diverse cultures and establishes the framework for exploring the practice of music around the world. Itsets the stage for an array of case-study volumes, each of which focuses on a single area of the world. Each case study uses the contemporary musical situation as a point of departure, covering historical information and traditions as they relate to the present. Visit www.

Music in Egypt is one of several case-study volumes that can be used along with Thinking Musically, the core book in the Global Music Series. Thinking Musically incorporates music from many diverse cultures and establishes the framework for exploring the practice of music around the world. It sets the stage for an array of case-study volumes, each of which focuses on a single area of the world. Each case study uses the contemporary musical situation as a point of departure, covering historical information and traditions as they relate to the present. Visit www.

Scott L. New York: Oxford University Press, Global Music Series. Although the study offers few fresh insights, the material is ably covered through detailed descriptions of performance contexts, audiences, economic factors and the stories and quotes of individual performers. Following the paradigm of the Oxford Global Music Series, three themes—the pervasive religious referencing in Egypt, the melodic and rhythmic systems, and perceptions of on-going change as normative—posit an underlying commonality to these traditions. The listening examples provide in- depth insight into the performative range and parameters of the melodic mode as do the blow- by- blow commentaries on what the listener is hearing. Learning is enhanced with a number of exercises that actively engage the student in singing along or reciting drum beats.

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