MALAS 600D SEM: RELIGION AND MUSIC
MCSQ-202 YALE STROM (more on Strom and his band here)
The Hebrew/Christian bible mentions the importance of music as early as Genesis 4:21, which tells of Jubal, the son of Lamech, who played the flute and harp. This class will explore three major religions and their musics: Judasim (Khasidism), Islam (Sufism) and Christianity (Eastern Orthodox). The founder of the Khasidic movement, Rabbi Israel Eliezer, said: “Khasidim say that this daily procession of children singing was as pleasing to the Almighty as was the singing of the Levites in the Temple.” The great Sufi mystic and poet Jalauddin Rumi said: "Today, like every other day, we wake up empty and frightened; don't open the door to the study and begin reading, instead take down a musical instrument. Let the beauty we love be what we do." And the development of Christian music in the form of the canon by Saints John of Damascus and Kosmas of Jerusalem (both eighth century) became an essential part of the orthodox liturgy through today. In the class "Religion and Music" we will study historical texts, musical examples and screen films. Students will learn how music has been an important and vital spiritual art form of religion in the past and present times and how some of these musical genres have crossed over to popular culture throughout the world.
Course Reading Will Be From: Rock & Roll Jihad: A Muslim’s Rock Star’s Revolution, by Salman Ahmad, An Introduction to the Orthodox Christian Churches by John Binns, The Book of Klezmer by Yale Strom, and Hasidism: The Movement and its Masters” by Harry M. Rabinowicz.