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Morocco

New Texts Out Now: Andrea Khalil, Gender, Women, and the Arab Spring

[Cover of Andrea Khalil,

Andrea Khalil, editor, Gender, Women, and the Arab Spring. London and New York: Routledge, 2015. [Editors’ Note: This book was originally published as a special issue of The Journal of North African Studies 19.2 (2014). To mark the publication of this special issue as a book, we are reprinting a NEWTON piece written by the editor, Andrea Khalil, in May 2014.] Jadaliyya (J): What made you put together this special issue?  Andrea Khalil (AK): During my fieldwork in Tunisia (2011-13) working on a book, I was sensitized to the profound problems that women in Tunisia were facing since the Revolution, and more generally, the urgency to address gender issues and ...

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Reconsidering the Rif Revolt (1958-59)

[Image of a Moroccan Liberation Army march in Nador around 1955. Image from mondeberbere.com]

“The people of the North have previously known the violence of the crown prince; it will be best for them not to know that of the king’s.” It is in this way that Hassan II (1961-1999) addressed himself to the inhabitants of northwest Morocco—and to the rest of the population—in reaction to the riots of 1984. Adopting a scornful and serious tone, the monarch reminded his subjects that he is capable of anything for the sake of conserving power. To refresh their memory, he did not hesitate to make a brief and symbolic allusion to the ferocious repression he carried out against the same regions twenty-five years beforehand. The sovereign's rhetorical choice to refer to the ...

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Rap as Activism in Morocco: A STATUS/الوضع Conversation between Mouad Belghouate (El-Haqed) and Samia Errazzouki

In this interview, Mouad Belghouate, who also goes by El-Haqed, discusses his work as both a rapper and activist in the Febraury 20th Movement in Morocco. Samia Errazouki asks Mouad to reflect on his time in prison, his relationship with other prisoners, and the growth of the rap industry in Morocco.  Please find the English transcript of the interview below the player, where you can listen to the interview in Arabic. The interview includes four parts that you can click on separately. Mouad Belghouate (El-Haqed) is a Moroccan rapper and activist involved with the February 20th Movement. From Casablanca, Mouad began writing and performing his songs during protests ...

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The Roots of Conflict: From Settler-Colonialism to Military Occupation in the Western Sahara (Part 2)

[Landscape shot of Laayoune from the southwest of the city. Image by author]

[The following article is the second in a two-part series tracing the roots of settler-colonialism and military occupation in the Western Sahara. Read the first part here.]  Morocco’s Shift from Settler-Colonialism to Military Occupation Morocco is dedicated to establishing a permanent and stable political authority in the territories, and is achieving this through military occupation. The occupation today consists of a highly militarized security sector in each city in the Occupied Territories to curb uprisings and civil resistance. In addition to the massive security regime that enforces the occupation and prevents uprisings from gaining traction, the Moroccan ...

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Maghreb Media Roundup (December 21)

[Image of a home in Choum, Mauritania. Image by Ammar Hassan/Flickr]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on the Maghreb and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Maghreb Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to maghreb@jadaliyya.com by Thursday night of every week] Algeria   Appel au meurtre contre Kamel Daoud A Salafi imam called for the assassination of Kamel Daoud, an award winning journalist and novelist from Oran, after an appearance on the French channel France 2. Bouteflika continue son tour d’Europe des hopitaux The medical plane for Algeria’s president ...

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Even Morocco’s Friends Know Its Judicial System Is Corrupt and Lacking in Due Process

[Image of Morocc's Court of Justice. Image by Kathrin Mezger/Flickr]

On 13 August 2014, a US federal court declined to enforce a 123 million dollar judgment issued by a Moroccan court in 2009 against Texas native John Paul DeJoria. In Dejoria v. Maghreb Petroleum Exploration S.A. (W.D. Tex. 13 August 2014), the court laid out various reasons for refusing to recognize the verdict, focusing on the absence of an independent judiciary and the unlimited influence of the Moroccan royal family, especially King Mohammad VI, on the country’s judicial system. In opining on Morocco’s judiciary, the federal court held that: The Moroccan court judgment was not rendered under a system that provides impartial tribunals and procedures ...

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Open Letter to the Organizing Committee of the World Forum for Human Rights in Morocco

[Image calling for the boycott of the World Forum for Human Rights in Morocco. Image from the Mouvement 20 février Rabat Facebook Page]

[The following is an open letter that the Rabat branch of the 20 February Movement has written to the international committee organizing the World Forum for Human Rights in Morocco. Below are also the French and Arabic versions of the letter.] 20 February Movement, Rabat branch 20 November, 2014 Subject: For the reasons below, the 20 February Movement objects to the hosting of the World Forum for Human Rights in Morocco. With your committee's support, Morocco will be hosting the second annual World Forum for Human Rights in Marrakech from 27 November to 30 November 2014. If the expectation of the forum is to provide a platform as the basis for an open international ...

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An Open Letter to King Mohammed VI

[Image of a portrait of King Mohammed VI in Casablanca. Image by slettvet/Flickr.]

[The following open letter was written by Moroccan journalist Hamza Mahfoud on 11 November 2014, in response to King Mohammed VI's speech marking the anniversary of the Green March. The open letter was originally published in Arabic on Huna Sotak and translated to English by Abdellah Laaraj. Since its publication, the open letter has been widely disseminated on social media, drawing a wide range of responses.] Dear King, I am writing regarding the Sahara after having watched your speech last Thursday. I would like to present the point of view of a Moroccan citizen who wished he were in a stronger position to defend his country. The reality is that he found himself ...

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Qui sera l’Etat ? : Le soulèvement du Rif reconsidéré (1958-59)

[Un défilé de l'ALN à Nador vers 1955. Image de mondeberbere.com]

« Les gens du nord ont autrefois connu la violence du Prince héritier, il vaudrait mieux pour eux qu’ils ne connaissent pas celle du Roi ». C’est ainsi qu’Hassan II (1961-1999) s’adresse aux habitants du nord-ouest du Maroc—et à travers eux à l’ensemble de la population—en réaction aux émeutes populaires de 1984. Adoptant alors un ton grave et méprisant, le monarque rappelle à ses sujets qu’il est capable de tout pour conserver le pouvoir. Pour leur rafraîchir la mémoire, il n’hésite pas à faire une allusion brève mais ô combien symbolique à la répression féroce qu’il a menée contre ces mêmes régions vingt-cinq ans auparavant. Le choix rhétorique du souverain ...

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Maghreb Media Roundup (October 23)

[Image of election lists in Tunisia during the 2011 elections. Image by Tarek/Flickr]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on the Maghreb and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Maghreb Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to maghreb@jadaliyya.com by Thursday night of every week]  Algeria En Algérie, le régime est à bout de souffle Algerian police protested in front of the Presidential Palace for twenty-four hours last week calling for an end to “hogra, or humiliation. This unprecedented demonstration comes at a time when many are questioning who is running the country as President Bouteflika has ...

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إشكالية المجتمع المدني في المغرب

[البرلمان المغربي. المصدر ويكيبيديا]

 الحديث عن المجتمع المدني في المغرب هو بالضرورة حديث عن الأزمة، أزمة المفهوم و أزمة الممارسة، وهذا المعطى لا يستقيم إلا إذا حددنا طبيعة هذه الأزمة على المستوى النظري والعملي، فنعرض في المرحلة الأولى للمفهوم من حيث مضامينه، وسياقه التاريخي، ونعرج في مرحلة ثانية على التجربة التاريخية المغربية و كيفية تعاملها مع المجتمع المدني وطبيعة توظيفها لمضمونه .   إشكالية المفهوم و الوظيفة  إذا كانت الخاصية المميزة للمعرفة عموماً محكومة بتجديد مفاهيمها وبناء معجمها الخاص من خلال وجود آلية وطريقة واضحة في بنية المفهوم  وتنظيم الميدان المعرفي في موضوعه وتخصصه و أفقه، فإن مفهوم المجتمع المدني لا زال أسير مشكلة المعنى بتعبير فيبر لتباين منطلقه المرجعي ـ ...

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Maghreb Media Roundup (October 11)

[Image of a ships graveyard in Nouadhibou, Mauritania. Image by slosada/Flickr.]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on the Maghreb and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Maghreb Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to maghreb@jadaliyya.com by Thursday night of every week.]  Algeria Algeria: North Africa’s Reluctant Policeman Maghreb and West Africa specialist Imad Mesdoua discusses the debate over Algeria’s increasingly important role in mitigating the security threat in North Africa and the Sahel regions. Iran backs Algeria's plan for national reconciliation in Libya Iran expresses ...

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Maghreb Media Roundup (January 30)

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on the Maghreb and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Maghreb Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to maghreb@jadaliyya.com by Thursday night of every week] Algeria Is a Late ‘Arab Spring’ Knocking on Algeria’s Doors from the Desert? Adam Al-Sabiri considers the implications of the vast protest movement against ...

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‘A Distinctly French Universalism’: Translating Laïcité after Charlie

Mayanthi L. Fernando, The Republic Unsettled: Muslim French and the Contradictions of Secularism. Durham: Duke University Press, 2014. Naomi Davidson. Only Muslim: Embodying Islam in Twentieth-Century France. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2012. Joan Wallach Scott. The Politics of the Veil. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2007. It was impossible to avoid the discussion, despite my repeated protests. In Lyon, as in the rest of France, there was nothing else to talk about—especially when I ...

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إشكالية الفرد في المغرب

نسعى في هذا المقال أن نثير إشكالاً يكتسي قلقاً مفاهيمياً ومعرفياً،  من خلال  البعد القيمي الذي ساد مؤخراً عن طبيعة الفرد المغربي وكيفية فهمه لطبيعة وجوده والآفاق التي ينسجها ارتباطاً بهذا المعطى. ليس يسوغ أن نتحدث عن الفرد  بمعزل عن مضمونه التاريخي والفلسفي والحقوقي الذي رسخته التجربة التاريخية للإنسانية برمتها مع استحضار التفاوت الحضاري بين الأمم في هذا المجال، إذ هو في المحصلة النهائية منتوج أسهم فيه النسق الحضاري الخاص وتأثر بسياقات عامة ألزمته بسمات صاغت جانبا من أنماط تفكيره ووجهت ...

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The Roots of Conflict: From Settler-Colonialism to Military Occupation in the Western Sahara (Part 1)

[The following article is the first in a two-part series tracing the roots of settler-colonialism and military occupation in the Western Sahara. Read the second part here.] Upon entering the Occupied Territories of the Western Sahara, I organized a focus group in the private living room of a Sahrawi activist’s home in Laayoune, Western Sahara, where nine activists were brought together. They were each imprisoned for varying periods of time between 1980 and 1991, while the Moroccan state warred with the ...

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New Texts Out Now: Isabelle Werenfels, Beyond Authoritarian Upgrading: The Re-Emergence of Sufi Orders in Maghrebi Politics

Isabelle Werenfels, "Beyond Authoritarian Upgrading: The Re-Emergence of Sufi Orders in Maghrebi Politics." The Journal of North African Studies 19.3 (2014). Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this article? Isabelle Werenfels (IW): It is a mélange of reasons. First and foremost, I was struck by how little research has been done by political scientists on the contemporary relationship between Sufi orders, the state, and politics in Algeria and Tunisia. Even in Morocco, this relationship has ...

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Maghreb Media Roundup (December 4)

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on the Maghreb and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Maghreb Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to maghreb@jadaliyya.com by Thursday night of every week] Algeria Are There Lessons to be Learnt From Algeria’s Past? Dalia Ghanem-Yazbeck examines similarities and differences between Algeria’s struggle with the Armed ...

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Maghreb Media Roundup (November 21)

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on the Maghreb and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Maghreb Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to maghreb@jadaliyya.com by Thursday night of every week] Algeria L’instance de coordination de la CNLTD appelle à l’organisation d’une élection présidentielle anticipée One of Algeria’s main opposition movements met ...

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Maghreb Media Roundup (November 8)

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on the Maghreb and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Maghreb Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to maghreb@jadaliyya.com by Thursday night of every week]  Algeria Algérie : 1er novembre 1954, retour sur la « Toussaint rouge » de l’indépendance Algeria celebrated the sixtieth anniversary of its ...

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Radio France Internationale Interview with Jadaliyya Co-Editor Samia Errazzouki on General Strike in Morocco

Morocco’s major labor unions have called for a general strike to take place today, on 29 October 2014. The appeal to action has called on a number of political parties, movements, and civil society groups to express their support and participate in the strike. Mobilizing among both the public and private sectors, the general strike is being organized in opposition to a number of reforms the current coalition government has proposed, including pension reform and raising the retirement age. The strike also ...

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New Texts Out Now: Edmund Burke III, The Ethnographic State: France and the Invention of Moroccan Islam

Edmund Burke III, The Ethnographic State: France and the Invention of Moroccan Islam. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 2014. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book?  Edmund Burke III (EB): Ever since my first book, Prelude to Protectorate in Morocco: Pre-colonial Protest and Resistance, 1860-1912 (1976), I had wanted to write a book about the role of French ethnography in the establishment of the Moroccan protectorate. Unfortunately my career did not go as planned, ...

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رحلتي إلى الراب والسياسة والسجن

 لماذا "الراب المحابسي"؟ لماذا لا أترك الموسيقى بعد أن تم حبسي ثلث مرات؟ أي دور يلعب الراب في الدفاع عن المجتمع ضد من يحكمونه بالفساد والاستغلال؟ سأخبركم قصة قصيرة. في صيف ٢٠٠٧ حينما كنت في العشرين من عمري، بدأت في أخذ الراب على محمل الجد وذلك بتأسيس فرقة أسميناها “عكاشة فاميلي." اخترنا حينها المقاومة والراب، مقررين نشر أغنية لنا على اليوتيوب نتداولها بين أصدقائنا. أغنية "عطيني حقي" نجحت وقدمنا عرضنا الأول. لم يعرف منظمو الحفل محتوى الأغاني قبل الحفل. صدم الجمهور بكلمات - ...

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Morocco's Mawazine Festival: Exposing Class Tensions and Social Unrest

The thirteenth annual Mawazine: Rhythms of the World festival concluded this summer after a ten-day run in Rabat. Mawazine is Morocco’s premiere music festival and the second largest music festival in the world, with a record-setting attendance of over 2.6 million attendees this year. Though the festival’s advertised objective is to promote a positive, modern image of Morocco and provide a platform for local musicians to get more international exposure, Mawazine has also highlighted the growing ...

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