Popular Songs in Palestine: Place and Identity

Mutasem Adileh (Al-Quds University, adileh@art.alquds.edu)

Abstract


This study attempts to show the features of the Palestinian identity and to deep-root the spatial dimension of the Palestinians on their homeland, by examining the philosophical and societal dimensions of the Palestinian popular songs.The significance of this study is derived from its focus on an important part of the Palestinian heritage, which is threatened by extinction, by examining the role of the Palestinian popular songs in deep-rooting a sense of identity and belonging to the land among the Palestinians. This preservation of identity is to ensure continuity by transferring it to future generations without any distortions, by linking the present generation to their heritage. This in turn would contribute to the cultural integratedness of the past with the present, the present with the future, as well as between home and the diasporas, which serves the Palestinians’ cause and enhances the steadfastness of the Palestinians in their historicalhomeland. Regarding the findings of the study, it can be said that the most important result is that through generations the Palestinian popular songs have been able to maintain its characteristics and traditions, to establish its existence as a distinctive popular creation, and as an important part of the Palestinians’ identity, and also as one of the important cultural documents of Palestinians belonging to the land of Palestine.

Keywords: Palestine, popular songs, place, identity, heritage

ABSTRAK

Kajian ini cuba menunjukkan ciri-ciri identiti rakyat Palestin dan untuk mendalami dimensi ruang rakyat itu di tanah air mereka, dengan meneliti dimensi falsafah dan masyarakat yang terdapat dalam lagu-lagu rakyat mereka. Kesignifikanan kajian ini boleh dikesan melalui tumpuan yang diberikan kepada satu bahagian penting warisan rakyat Palestin, yang diancam kepupusan, dengan menunjukkan peranan lagu-lagu rakyat Palestin itu dalam usaha menanam perasaan kepunyaan identiti dan tanah air di kalangan mereka. Ini adalah untuk mengekalkan identiti tersebut supaya dapat diwariskan kepada generasi masa depan tanpa diputarbelitkannya (distort) bagi mencapai kesinambungan komunikasi intelektual dan budaya dengan mengaitkan generasi masakini dengan warisan mereka. Ini menyumbang kepada pembentukan satu budaya yang tersepadu antara masa lampau dan masa kini, masa kini dan masa depan, juga antara tanah air dan diaspora, yang memenuhi perjuangan rakyat Palestin dan pada masa yang sama mempertingkatkan ketabahan rakyat Palestin di tanah air mereka yang bersejarah itu. Berdasarkan hasil kajian, boleh dikatakan dapatan yang penting ialah bahawa lagu-lagu rakyat Palestin berupaya mengekalkan ciri-ciri dan tradisinya daripada satu generasi kepada satu generasi, dan seterusnya mengukuhkan kewujudannya sebagai satu ciptaan yang popular lagi tersendiri. Dapatan kajian juga menunjukkan lagu-lagu rakyat itu merupakan satu bahagian penting dalam identiti rakyat Palestin dan juga sebagai satu dokumen budaya yang penting, yang menunjukkan adanya satu perasaan ‘belonging’ rakyat Palestin terhadap tanah air mereka.

Kata kunci: Palestin, lagu-lagu rakyat, tempat, identiti, warisan


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