Show Summary Details

Page of

Printed from Grove Music Online. Grove is a registered trademark. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy).

date: 09 December 2019

Arab musiclocked

  • Owen Wright,
  • Christian Poché
  •  and Amnon Shiloah


Music traditions in the Arabic-speaking world. For discussions of the music of specific areas, see also individual country articles.

The art music/folk (or popular) music opposition is a blunt instrument at best, and at various times and places in the Arab world it would be unrealistic or unhelpful to seek to draw a clear dividing line. In Arabic the terminological distinction is a modern importation, and while the earlier textual tradition may recognize regional differences it is more frequently concerned with an ultimately ethical evaluation of the various purposes for which music may be used. However, these imply distinctions of function and social context, and as one major constant in Arab and Middle Eastern Islamic culture generally we may identify a form of entertainment music for which, in fact, the label ‘art music’ is quite apt. Nurtured at courts, patronized by urban élites, performed by professionals (and aristocratic amateurs) and described in explicitly theoretical terms, art music constituted an integral element of sophisticated high culture and, consequently, could be regarded as a suitable subject for scientific and philosophical enquiry....

You do not currently have access to this article


Please login to access the full content.


Please subscribe to access the full content.

Revista de musicología
Princeton (NJ), Princeton University, Firestone Memorial Library
Cairo, National Library (Dar al-Kutub)
Gotha, Forschungs- und Landesbibliothek, Musiksammlung
Anuario musical
Journal of the American Musicological Society
Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz, Musikabteilung
Leiden, Rijksuniversiteit, Bibliotheek
San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Monasterio, Real Biblioteca
Istanbul, Nuruosmania Kütüphanesi
Sammelbände der Internationalen Musik-Gesellschaft
Revue de musicologie
Die Musikforschung
Leeds, University of Leeds, Brotherton Library
Oxford, Bodleian Library
The New Oxford History of Music (Oxford, 1954-90)
Acta musicologica
Proceedings of the Musical Association
Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale de France
Early Music History
Yearbook of the International Folk Music Council
Musica disciplina
London, British Library
Zeitschrift für Musikwissenschaft
Asian Music
Studia musicologica Academiae scientiarum hungaricae