Alessandra Ciucci is currently Assistant Professor of Music (Ethnomusicology) at Columbia University. She received her PhD in music (ethnomusicology) from The City University of New York at The Graduate Center. Her research interests include: the music of Morocco, North Africa, the Mediterranean, music and gender, sung poetry, and music and migration. Her articles appear in Ethnomusicology, The Yearbook for Traditional Music, The International Journal of Middle East Studies, Mondi Migranti, Cahiers de musiques traditionnelles, in the Sage Encyclopaedia of Ethnomusicology, and in several edited volumes. Ciucci has been a recipient of a Fulbright foreign scholarship grant (Morocco), a fellowship from the Jewish Foundation for the Education of Women, a grant from the American Institute for Maghrib Studies Grant, and a Junior faculty summer research grant for the Humanities and Social Sciences. Dr. Ciucci was a Mellon Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Music Department at Columbia 2008-10.
Professor Ciucci will discuss the sound of a specific notion of the rural (l-‘ǝrubiya) which, through contemporary migration, travels from central Morocco across the Mediterranean to Italy. She ethnographically explores how the sound of such a notion of the rural—as a site of aesthetic behaviors, performative acts, and signifying practices—resonates across borders through ‘abidat rma—a musico-poetic genre performed at private and public celebrations and circulated through cassettes, CDs, DVDs, MP3s, and the Internet in Morocco and abroad. She argues that ‘abidat rma challenges a sonic construction of the Mediterranean which has privileged a Eurocentric mode of listening, rather than that experienced by moving and migrating bodies. To this end, Ciucci explores how Moroccan men from the central regions of Morocco, engaged in the experience and in the imagination of migration across the Mediterranean to Italy, disrupt a seamless narrative of the Mediterranean through the performance of a specific and intimate sense of the rural in sound. She examines how the poetic language, gesture, and sound of ‘abidat rma are imbued with locality, how this sung poetry gives voice to conflicts of transformation, and how it articulates the affective and sonic lives of generations of male Moroccan migrants at a transnational level.
The talk will begin at 7:00 pm. For more information or to register for the pre-talk dinner, write the seminar's rapporteur Sahar Ishtiaque Ullah (firstname.lastname@example.org) no later than Thursday, September 29, 2016.