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October 2013 -- Listen and compare the sound of the blues with the West African call to prayer and the recitation of the Qur'an at the "Islam and the Blues" lecture by historian Dr. Sylviane A. Diouf on Sunday, November 3 at 1 p.m. in Marquette University's Varsity Theatre.

Dr. Sylviane Diouf

Raynor Memorial Libraries host Dr. Diouf as part of Milwaukee Public Library's Poetic Voices of the Muslim World traveling exhibition.

Dr. Diouf is an award-winning historian from the New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. Her presentation will illustrate the evolution of blues music through images and recordings. She will play early blues recordings side by side with African recordings of the call to prayer and the recitation of the Qur'an and invite the audience to catch the similarities in technique.

Milwaukee Public Library is one of six public library systems to participate in the exhibition. The series of events highlight poetic traditions from the four language areas of Arabic, Persian, Turkish and Urdu. Programs began September 24 and will continue through November 17, ending with a talk on the poetic traditions of Yemeni Women by cultural anthropologist Dr. Najwa Adra.

Dr. Najwa Adra

Yemeni Women's Poetic Traditions with Dr. Najway Adra

Sunday, November 17 at 2 p.m.
Central Library, Centennial Hall

Dr. Najwa Adra is a cultural anthropologist who traveled to Yemen to explore and record women’s songs, short poems, and rhyming proverbs from rural areas to illustrate the ways in which poetry is integrated into village life. She describes how verse is used by women as a socially acceptable way to express their feelings and opinions, even expressing how they feel about prospective suitors for marriage. She also discusses the impact that economic and social change along with recently imported conservative interpretations of Islam have had on these traditions.

- Milwaukee Public Library

Please contact Jennifer Heidel or visit the Poetic Voices of the Muslim World website for more information on these events.

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