This work presents the complete collection of oral poetry by ad-Dindān, a bedouin poet of the Duwāsir tribe in southern Najd, transcribed and translated on the basis of taped recordings. The text is representative of a poetic tradition which has remained remarkably close to the desert poetry of the early classical age. An extensive glossary, including detailed cross-references to the classical Arabic vocabulary, completes this edition.
The introduction describes Dindān's somewhat anomalous position in local society as a result of his stubborn attachment to nomadism, his fierce artistic temper, and his unreconstructed bedouin ethos. It also discusses the composition of oral poetry, the dīwān's themes and its place in the Najdi tradition, the impact of literacy on the poet's oral work, and the prosodic and linguistic features of the text.