Lisa Urkevich Ph.D. is a professor of Musicology/Ethnomusicology and Chair of the Department of Music and Drama at the American University of Kuwait where she teaches courses on music and rituals of Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States.
Part one provides an in-depth introduction to the area of Southeast Asia and explores a series of issues and processes, such as colonialism, mass media, spirituality, and war. The articles in this section are important in gaining historical, political, and social perspective. Part two focuses on mainland Southeast Asia, with essays representing Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Burma, Peninsular Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, and the minority peoples of mainland Southeast Asia. Part three focuses on island Southeast Asia, dividing the area into three sections: Indonesia, the Philippines, and Borneo. In addition to offering a detailed study of the music of each area, it also offers recent perspectives on the gamelan and theater traditions of Indonesia. Questions for Critical Thinking at the end of each major section guide and focus attention on what issues – musical and cultural – arise when one studies the music of Southeast Asia – issues that might not occur in the study of other musics of the world. An accompanying compact disc offers musical examples from Southeast Asia.
Part One, Creating Connections, provides introductory materials for the study of South African Music. Part Two, Musical Migrations, moves to a more focused overview of significant musical styles in twentieth-century South Africa -- particularly those known through world circuits. Part Three, Focusing In, takes the reader into the heart of two musical cultures with case studies on South African jazz and the music of the Zulu-language followers of Isaiah Shembe. The accompanying CD offers vivid examples of traditional, popular, and classical South African musical styles.
(1) Field Testing the Communication of Divine Message: The unique feature of this translation is its field testing for over 3 1/2 years to improve the communication and understanding of the Divine Message. Translation passages were given to the New Muslim and Non-Muslim high school and college students for reading under the supervision of various Ulema (scholars). After reading, the person was asked to explain as to what he/she understood from the passage. If his/her understanding was the same as is in the Arabic Text of the Holy Qur'an then we concluded that we have been successful in conveying the Divine Message properly. If his/her understanding was different than what the Qur'anic verses were stating, we kept on rewording the translation until those verses were understood properly. It was tremendous patience on part of the participants. May Allah reward them all.
(2) Simplicity: In this translation Simple Language and Direct Approach is used for appealing to the common sense of scholars and common people.
(3) Understandability: There are no foot notes to refer and no commentary or lengthy explanations to read. All necessary explanations have been incorporated right there in the text with italic type setting to differentiate from the translation of the meanings of Qur'anic Arabic Text.
(4) Outline of Pertinent Information: Before the start of each Srah, information relating to its Period of Revelation, Major Issues, Divine Laws and Guidance has been presented as an outline. Then a summary of the preceding events has been tabulated for the reader to understand the histo! rical background to grasp the full meaning of the Divine Message.
(5) Reviews, Input and Approvals: This project was started in 1991 and initial draft completed in 1994. Then the Translation was sent to different Ulema (Scholars) in Town and throughout United States for their review and input. After their reviews and input it was sent to Jme Al-Azhar Al-Sharif in Egypt, Ummal Qur in Saudi Arabia and International Islamic University in Pakistan for their review, input and approval. This translation was published after their reviews and approvals.