Feminisms in Morocco
A Drift Through Territories
Spanish factories where women from Tangiers work. Spanish tourists in beachfront hotels in Martil (Tetouan). Moroccan women picking strawberries in Huelva. Lives that take place here and there, a continual transit of people, capital, histories and powers through this narrow strait. Yet, in relation to social movements, in particular feminism and its capacity to contribute significantly to ways of understanding, caring and organising, there are scant connections between one territory and another.
In February 2020, Hanan Dalouh Amghar and Maggie Schmitt embarked on a research trip through northern Morocco with a view to establishing contact and engaging in dialogue with collectives and women who are active in feminist struggles. The research stems from three key questions: Which feminist and/or women’s collectives are active there today? Which practices, debates and challenges are contemplated among these groups and what is the relationship with Moroccan reality? Which connections and alliances can be established with the active feminisms here?
In this encounter, the two researchers and three activists from northern Morocco they met on their trip will discuss the situation of the feminist movement in the context of present-day Morocco, exploring issues, leading figures, disputes and challenges and placing the stress on the diversity of initiatives, priorities and practices, and on the different realities of country and city, centre and periphery.
The encounter seeks to cast light on the legacy of women’s struggles in Morocco through the conquest of rights — both individual and collective — and always from a gaze of mutual understanding that looks to serve at once as an alliance and impetus to weave together networks.
Co-occurring with this activity is the organisation of a session designed specifically for Moroccan women comprising the Open Classroom for Women in the Rivas-Vaciamadrid Council’s Department of Feminisms and Diversity. With Hanan Dalouh and Zohra Koubia, a conversation is put forward on the aforementioned issues and ends with a visit to the Museo and the exhibition Moroccan Trilogy 1950–2020.
Hanan Dalouh Amghar is an intercultural social mediator, translator and interpreter, and an activist who defends human rights with a commitment to feminisms.
Souad Eddouada is a lecturer at Université Ibn Tofail in Kenitra, Morocco. Her work is focused on the feminist movement and human rights. In recent years, she has joined the struggle of farming communities for access to land, with a particular emphasis on the prominent role of women and neoliberal dynamics.
Zohra Koubia is part of the Moroccan Association of Human Rights (AMDH) and founder and president of the Association Forum des Femmes Au Rif (AFFA RIF).
Nadia Naïr is a lecturer at Université Abdelmalek Essaâdi, Tangiers-Tetouan, and an activist and member of the Union of Feminist Action, Morocco. She specialises in gender and human rights issues and is the author of a wide range of articles on women’s advocacy in Morocco and Muslim emigration in Europe.
Maggie Schmitt is a translator who works in different media to intertwine networks and discourse around feminisms, agri-food cultures and the relationship between lives and places.