Temple University


Joseph Alpar is an ethnomusicologist, performer, and composer who has taught at Bennington College, Swarthmore College, Hunter College, and Temple University. His areas of interest include music in Turkey and the Middle East, Jewish music, music in Sufism and Islam, and music and modernity. He is also the founder of David's Harp, a Philadelphia-based ensemble specializing in the music of Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewish communities.

Alpar completed his PhD at The Graduate Center of the City of New York with a dissertation titled “Songs of Ambivalence: Synagogue Liturgy and Religious Renewal in Istanbul's Jewish Community.”



Delving into the meaning of modernity beyond the European, American, and Israeli contexts, looking instead to North Africa, the Levant, the Arabian Peninsula, and Central and South Asia.