Andalusian Strophic Poetry Between the Spoken and the Written:

The Case of the Moroccan Andalusian Music Tradition


by Muhammad Ikraam Abdu-Noor, Yale University


SUMMARY: The paper explores the effects of the spoken and the written on the texts of the musical-literary tradition known in Morocco as the Andalusian music, many of whose texts are based upon Andalusian muwashshah‚t and azj‚l.From its earliest roots in Andalusian poetic and musical culture, this tradition has been shaped by a combination of oral and literate influences, through the processes of performance, teaching, and preservation in text and audio recordings.This mixed orality has played a central role in the perpetuation of this literary tradition as an element in Moroccan public culture and has left its imprint on the texts themselves.Modern anthologies are consulted, as well as historical sources and recent fieldwork in Morocco, in order to suggest various ways in which mixed orality has touched the form and content of the texts, as well as the question of authorship itself.