Morocco: Multiculturalism and Human Rights

"I was drawn to SIT Morocco because of the heavy concentration on language. Today, my Arabic is polished, professional, and competent, which has opened many doors. I’m now considering a research Fulbright in Morocco knowing I could pursue my academic interests with the confidence of being able to communicate well. I LOVED every part of the SIT Morocco program."

-- Asil Yassine, Austin College

Examine challenges shaping Morocco and the Arab world: authoritarian rule, democratic transition, economic liberalization, civil society, Islamic movements, and constitutional reforms following the 2011 Arab Spring.

This program examines human rights, religion, politics, and cultural diversity in Morocco contextualized within the broader region and beyond. A particular focus on gender issues includes looking at women’s roles in contemporary Moroccan society and Moroccan feminism.

Students examine current challenges shaping Morocco and the Arab world: authoritarian rule, democratic transition, economic liberalization, civil society, Islamic movements, and the constitutional reforms following the 2011 Arab Spring.

Lecture topics include:

  • Interplay between authoritarianism and human rights
  • Tensions between secular and religious approaches to individual freedoms
  • Liberal reforms (proposed and enacted) in areas such ethnicity, women’s rights, and state violence 

Students acquire an in-depth appreciation of a rich and rapidly changing society. Review program syllabi.

The program’s homestays allow students to share daily life with Moroccans and practice their Arabic language skills. The village stay includes a community volunteer experience, discussion with locals, and group field assignments.

The program typically visits Midelt, Merzouga Dunes, Ouarzazate, Essaouira, Marrakech, Oulmes, Fnideq, and the enclave of Ceuta. Students consider Morocco’s cultural, historical, and ecological diversity and the role Morocco has played — historically and to the present day — in relation to Africa and Europe.

Program lecturers are drawn from Morocco’s leading academic and civil society institutions including: 

Visit the faculty page for a complete list of in-country resources and program partners.

Students on SIT’s three Morocco programs recently participated in a youth symposium in Rabat that brought together approximately 100 young Americans and Moroccans. Entitled “Youth & Civil Society,” the event — held at University of Mohammed V — sparked dialogue and debate. Read more about this symposium in an article written by fall 2012 student Karis Hustad. 
Asif Majid Asif Majid (University of Maryland, Baltimore County) studied on the SIT Morocco Multiculturalism and Human Rights program in spring 2012. He recently published a book entitled This Moroccan Life that was informed by his research and experiences on this program. Learn more.

Costs Dates

Credits: 16

Duration: 15 weeks

Program Base: Rabat

Language Study: Arabic

Prerequisites: None; however, students with a background in French will have opportunities for French language practice while also learning Moroccan and Modern Standard Arabic. Read more...


View Student Evaluations for this program:

About the Evaluations (PDF)

Fall 2013 Evaluations (PDF)
Spring 2013 Evaluations (PDF)
Fall 2012 Evaluations (PDF)

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