Mix­ing Musics: Turk­ish Jew­ry and the Urban Land­scape of a Sacred Song

Mau­reen Jackson
  • From the Publisher
December 23, 2013

This book traces the mix­ing of musi­cal forms and prac­tices in Istan­bul to illu­mi­nate mul­ti­eth­nic music-mak­ing and its trans­for­ma­tions across the twen­ti­eth and twen­ty-first cen­turies. It focus­es on the Jew­ish reli­gious reper­toire known as the Maftir­im, which devel­oped in par­al­lel with sec­u­lar” Ottoman court music. Through mem­oirs, per­son­al inter­views, and new archival sources, the book explores areas often left out of those his­to­ries of the region that focus pri­mar­i­ly on Jew­ish com­mu­ni­ties in iso­la­tion, polit­i­cal events and actors, or nation­al­iz­ing nar­ra­tives. Mau­reen Jack­son fore­grounds artis­tic inter­ac­tiv­i­ty, detail­ing the life-sto­ries of musi­cians and their musi­cal activ­i­ties. Her book amply demon­strates the inte­gra­tion of Jew­ish musi­cians into a larg­er art world and traces con­ti­nu­ities and rup­tures in a nation-build­ing era. Among its rich­ly researched themes, the book explores the syn­a­gogue as a mul­ti­func­tion­al venue with­in broad­er urban space; girls, women, and gen­der issues in an all-male per­for­mance prac­tice; new tech­nolo­gies and oral trans­mis­sion; and Ottoman musi­cal recon­struc­tions with­in Jew­ish life and cul­tur­al pol­i­tics in Turkey today.

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