Issa Aji

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Assistant Instructor in Theory

Issa Aji is currently a Ph.D. student and assistant instructor in music theory at the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to arriving at the University of Texas, he received his master’s degree in music theory from Temple University, where he also served as a teaching assistant. His primary research interest revolves around intersections of musical expressivity and emotion. His approach to this topic spans a number of subjects: semiotics, hermeneutics, psychoanalysis, gesture, temporality, performativity, and culture. He has presented his research on emotions, frisson, and narrativity across the country. Currently, Issa is working on a project that investigates the role of emotions in Arabic music, specifically tarab, which also informs his teaching philosophy. He is also active as a bass player who enjoys playing jazz and Middle Eastern music.

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Teaching Areas



Master of Music
Temple University

Bachelor of Music
Rowan University