For my Independent Study, I conducted a four-week research project on what I will refer to as the “Women’s Movement” in Morocco. My initial goal was to understand the framing and aims of this movement. To do so, I sought to explore the different forces impacting the movement – such as local cultural contexts, religion, globalization and colonization – and to analyze the impact of these forces on how different women conceptualize their goals surrounding gender. I studied a variety of scholarship on the Moroccan Women’s Movement, focusing on a critical analysis of the state, international interests and non-profit organizations. Throughout my research, I placed academic theory in direct conversation with Morocco’s unique historical, social, political and economic environment. To reach my analysis, I combined in-depth academic inquiry with my own observations living in Morocco for three months, the knowledge I gained through SIT-led NGO visits and expert lectures, as well as interviews with Professor Souad Eddouada, Professor Soumaya Belhabib, Professor Sarah Hebbouch and journalist Aida Alami.
At the beginning of my study, I hypothesized that different women, scholars and organizations would conceptualize the Women’s Movement in different ways. In one case, appropriations of Western language may coincide with localized understandings of gender, while in another, they may exist at an irreconcilable tension. Ultimately, it is not possible to fully separate the different forces impacting women in Morocco, as they are constantly overlapping and interacting. I am not interested in finding one “right” way to lead a Women’s Movement, but in understanding women’s hopes and goals through conversation, observation and engaged analysis.
African Studies | Feminist Philosophy | Gender and Sexuality | Nonprofit Administration and Management | Politics and Social Change | Women's Studies
Ross, Lily, "Gender Roles And The Social Agent: Framing The Women’s Movement(s) In Postcolonial Morocco" (2022). Independent Study Project (ISP) Collection. 3542.