Dr. Mark Kligman's "Maqam and Liturgy: Ritual, Music, and Aesthetics of Syrian Jews in Brooklyn" Recognized

Friday, December 4, 2009

The Jordan Schnitzer Book Award Committee has designated Dr. Mark Kligman book, Maqam and Liturgy: Ritual, Music, and Aesthetics of Syrian Jews in Brooklyn, as a 2009 Notable Selection in the category of Jews and the Arts. In recognizing his book, the committee stated: 

Through extensive ethnography in a culturally very distinctive community of Jewish-Americans, Kligman finds a Judeo-Arab cultural synthesis at the very heart of these Syrian immigrants’ religious practice--the performance of liturgy--and as a vital component of their identity. Intersecting anthropology, ethnomusicology, community studies, and liturgy, the book clearly and cogently lays out a remarkable story that "transcends time and place" to offer an unexpected perspective on ritual as a space of expressive and communal choice. The rich accompanying CD allows readers to partake of the actual sounds of the service.

Dr. Kligman’s achievement will be recognized at the Jordan Schnitzer Book Award Reception, to be held Sunday, December 20, 2009 at the Association for Jewish Studies conference in Los Angeles. 

Dr. Kligman is Professor of Jewish Musicology at HUC-JIR/New York where he teaches in the School of Sacred Music. Educated at New York University and California State University, he earned his doctorate in Musicology with and emphasis on Ethnomusicology at NYU in 1997. Dr. Kligman specializes in the liturgical traditions of Middle Eastern Jewish communities and has published several articles on the liturgy of Syrian Jews. His work also extends to historical trends in the liturgical music of Ashkenazic and Sephardic traditions. Another area of research is contemporary Jewish music since the 1970s.

Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's first institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding. www.huc.edu