Skip Navigation

Brockport / History / Faculty / Dr. Carl Davila

History Faculty

Dr. Carl DavilaDr. Davila

Office: 331 Liberal Arts Building
Phone: 585.395.5699


  • Arabic Language and Culture, Arab History, Classical Islam


  • Ph.D., Yale University, 2006 (Arabic Studies)
  • B.A., SUNY College at Brockport, 1998 (History)

Awards and Honors

  • Presidential Fellow, SUNY College at Brockport, 2006-2008
  • Fulbright-Hays Fellowship for Dissertation Research in Morocco, "The Moroccan Andalusian Music Tradition: Between the Spoken and the Written," 2005-2006.
  • Fulbright Fellowship for Research in Morocco, "Translation and Textual Analysis of the Andalusian Music," 2004-2005.
  • Graduate Research Grant, American Institute for Maghreb Studies, "Al-Musiqa al-Andalusiyya fi al-Magrib al-Aqsa: The Survival and Preservation of a Literary Tradition." 2003-2004.
  • Presidential Citation for Outstanding Graduating Student, SUNY College at Brockport, 1998.

Courses Taught 

  • Medieval Islamic Civilization
  • Classical Arabic and Islamic Poetry
  • Classical Arabic Literature in History
  • Jihad
  • Sufism
  • The Qur' ān
  • Graduate Topics in World History: Topics in Arab-Islamic Historiography
  • Islamic Spain:  Histories and Legacies
  • Middle East Regional Seminar
  • Orientalism
  • Gender in the Islamic World


  • The Pen, the Voice, the Text:  Ramal al-Māya in Cultural Context. Leiden: EJ Brill, forthcoming.
  • Al-Āla: History, Society and Text  Wiesbaden: Reichert Verlag, 2013.
  • Elite Music and Dance," in Mapping the Medieval Mediterranean, ca. 300-1550: An Encyclopedia of Perspectives in Research, Amity Nichols Law, volume editor.  Leiden: E.J. Brill, forthcoming.
  • The Andalusi Turn: The Nūba in Mediterranean History,” Journal of Mediterranean Studies, special issue in press.
  • “East Winds and Full Moons: Ramal al-Māya and the Peregrinations of Love-Poetry Images,” Journal of North African Studies, special issue produced by the Spain-North Africa Project, vol. 19 no. 1, 2014. 7-26.
  • Yā man qātilī bi-l-tajannī: Love, Contextualized Meaning and Praise of the Prophet in Ramal al-Māya.” Quaderni di Studi Arabi, Special Issue 7, 2012. 47-68.
  • "Fixing a Misbegotten Biography: Ziryab in the Mediterranean World." Al-Masâq: Islam and the Medieval Mediterranean, 12 (ii) 2009.
  • "Andalusian Strophic Poetry Between the Spoken and the Written: The Case of the Moroccan Andalusian Music Tradition"  in Muwashshah: Proceedings of the Conference on Arabic and Hebrew Strophic Poetry and its Romance Parallels, School of Oriental and African Studies [SOAS], London, 8-10 October 2004.  Ed. Ed Emery. London: RN Books. 2006
  • "Sunset in the Gardens of al-Andalus" (poetry from the Moroccan Andalusian Music in translation) Palimpsest, April 2005.

Conferences and Presentation

  • “The Andalusi Turn: The Nūba Tradition in the Mediterranean World” lectures given at two parallel conferences: “Sounding Communities: Music and the Three Religions in Medieval Iberia” (UC Riverside and Columbia University, February, 2014)
  • "Slaves and Wives, Fact and Fiction: Uncovering Gender Ideology in Classical Islamic Spain" lecture given at the Department of History, National University of Ireland in Maynooth, March 2012.
  • "'They called her the imām': Artiste Slaves and the Production of Courtly Music in 9th-Century  Cordoba" paper presented at the Medieval Academy of America Annual Meeting, New Haven, CT, March, 2010.
  • "Ka-dāratin ʿalā t-tamām : The Facets of al-madīḥ an-nabawī in Nūbat Ramal al-Māya" lecture given at the Yale Arabic Colloquium, December, 2010.
  • Conference organizer: Reconsidering 'the Orient' and 'the Occident' in the 21st Century: Observing the 30th Anniversary of Edward Said's Orientalism, the College at Brockport, 12 April, 2008.
  • "The Other Andalusian Music: Andalusi Strophic Poetry in the Moroccan Samâ' wa-Madîh" presented at the Third International Conference on Andalusian Strophic Poetry at the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, October, 2007.
  • "Fixing a Misbegotten Biography: Ziryâb in the Mediterranean World," presented at the International Medieval Conference, University of Leeds, UK, July 2006.
  • "Kun shafīʿī: Orality and Literacy in the Moroccan Āla," presented at the Middle Eastern Studies Association annual conference in Washington, D.C., November 2005.
  • "A Tradition of Teaching a Tradition: Oral and Literate Dimensions of the Moroccan Āla," presented at the Society for Ethnomusicology annual conference in Atlanta, GA, November 2005.
  • "Andalusian Strophic Poetry Between the Spoken and the Written: The Case of the Moroccan Andalusian Music," presented at Muwashshah: Andalusian Strophic Poetry and Its Hebrew and Persian Cognates conference, School of Oriental and African Studies, London, October, 2004.

Current Projects

  • Further study of the reception and integration of the Andalusi literary-musical legacy in North Africa. I am particularly interested in the ways that the various nūba traditions have enmeshed the classical Arabic poetic stream in discourses of communal identity, national memory and so on.
  • Co-editing with Jonathan Shannon a forthcoming anthology entitled Echoes of al-Andalus, featuring a range of scholarship on the Andalusian music traditions of the Mediterranean region..

Dr. Davila 2


Last Updated 9/3/14


Congratulations to Dr. Jose R. Torre on winning the Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching!

History major Michael Zagari has been accepted into the Duquesne University School of Law this coming fall on a full academic scholarship! During his time at Brockport, Mike has played on the NCAA men’s ice hockey team and has won the Jack Crandall and Robert Griswold History Department Awards.

History major Gabrielle Brannigan received a scholarship to enter the MA program in Social Studies and Special Education at the University of Rochester's Warner School of Education.

History professor Jose R. Torre to direct NEH Landmarks Workshop for K-12 teachers. The Rochester Reform Trail explores Rochester’s nationally important antebellum reform history. This July, 72 K-12 teachers from as far away as California, Florida and Oregon will visit Rochester and learn why national figures like Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony chose to live and work for social justice in Rochester, New York.


Robert Marcus Memorial Lecture, Thursday, 4/14/16, 7:30 pm, McCue Auditorium (LibArt 104 A/B), Dr. Raymond Craib (Cornell University), Title: "The Cry of the Renegade:  The politics and poetry of subversion in Santiago, Chile"