16 Pages

The Theme of Love in the Mozarabic Jarchas and in Cante Flamenco 1

ByRobert W. Felkel

Students of Spanish literature have always known what experts in the relatively new field of popular culture are repeatedly emphasizing: the common denominator of taste is not low by definition. This is certainly true of popular culture in Andalucia, a region of Spain which may lack the Powerful sense of national identity that we see in the Basque Country, in Cataluña, and to a lesser extent in Galicia, but which nevertheless has a well-defined personality and an extraordinarily vigorous culture. This cultural vigor may be due in part to the fact that culture in area of Spain has been mestizo (if I may be to use the word somewhat loosely) since the dawn of its history, as we see in aljamiada 2 of the jarchas and in flamenco, which Manuel Machado has defined as “lo andaluz pasado por lo gitano” (cited Lerrea 442).