al-hakawati is the Arabic word for 'the storyteller'. al-hakawati Arab Cultural Trust is an independent non-profit educational organization, registered in May 2006. Management and staff are located in Beirut, Lebanon, and New Jersey, USA. al-hakawati is a free educational resource and reference, made possible by the Arab Cultural Trust. The content of al-hakawati covers the 22 Arab states, members of the Arab League. The content is arranged thematically in ten sections, each with several subsections. New entries are regularly added.
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The Bedouins of ancient Arabia and Persia made poetry a conversational art form. Several poetic forms developed from the participatory nature of tribal poetry. Today in most Arabic cultures, you may still experience public storytelling and spontaneous poetry challenges in the streets. The art of turning a rhyme into sly verbal sparring is considered a mark of intelligence and a badge of honor. Students will learn about the origins and structure of Arabic Poetry.
This course serves as an introduction to the pre-modern Islamic artistic traditions of the Mediterranean, Near East, and Central and South Asia. It surveys core Islamic beliefs, the basic characteristics of Islamic art and architecture, and art and architecture created under each dynasty and ruling party. Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to: identify the core beliefs of Islam, the major characteristics of Islamic art, and the major forms of Islamic architecture; identify major pre-modern Islamic works of art and monuments from the Middle East, Northern Africa, Spain, and South Asia; explain how the core beliefs of Islam contributed to the basic characteristics of Islamic art and architecture and the secular art works and architecture of the Islamic world; identify the succeeding dynasties that ruled the Islamic world; explain the important role that the patronage of art and architecture had played in definitions of kingship. (Art History 303)
In this packet we look at works that span nearly a thousand yearsäóîfrom shortly after the foundation of Islam in the seventh century to the seventeenth century when the last two great Islamic empiresäóîthe Ottoman and the Safavidäóîhad reached their peak. Although the definition of Islamic art usually includes work made in Mughal India, it is beyond the scope of this packet. The works we will look at here come from as far west as Spain and as far east as Afghanistan.