Title

Changing Religious Practices Among Young Women in Morocco

Presenter Information

Basmah Shabazz

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Location

SURC Ballroom A

Start Date

17-5-2012

End Date

17-5-2012

Abstract

Morocco was founded on the basis of Islam, and this permeates local art, culture, law and philosophy. During the past decades, however, the country has undergone significant socio-cultural change as a result of globalization within the region. Building on three weeks of focused ethnographic fieldwork in December 2011 and my background as an expatriate Moroccan native, this paper examines recent change in religious expression in Morocco, specifically changes related to the manner of dress among young women. The fieldwork incorporated a range of methods, including informal interviews, key informant interviews, and participant observation, to better understand how people experience the political and cultural changes in Morocco of the past decade. With a focus on women in the transformation of Islamism within Moroccan culture, my findings confirm an increase in female rights in Morocco, as well as a decrease in religious practices among the younger generations. The study probes the role of western influences in altering the once prescriptive clothing choices for women in Morocco. This study contributes to our understanding of the relationship between veil wearing and Islam, and the impact of globalization in Morocco.

Poster Number

43

Faculty Mentor(s)

Lene Pedersen

Additional Mentoring Department

Anthropology

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May 17th, 8:30 AM May 17th, 11:00 AM

Changing Religious Practices Among Young Women in Morocco

SURC Ballroom A

Morocco was founded on the basis of Islam, and this permeates local art, culture, law and philosophy. During the past decades, however, the country has undergone significant socio-cultural change as a result of globalization within the region. Building on three weeks of focused ethnographic fieldwork in December 2011 and my background as an expatriate Moroccan native, this paper examines recent change in religious expression in Morocco, specifically changes related to the manner of dress among young women. The fieldwork incorporated a range of methods, including informal interviews, key informant interviews, and participant observation, to better understand how people experience the political and cultural changes in Morocco of the past decade. With a focus on women in the transformation of Islamism within Moroccan culture, my findings confirm an increase in female rights in Morocco, as well as a decrease in religious practices among the younger generations. The study probes the role of western influences in altering the once prescriptive clothing choices for women in Morocco. This study contributes to our understanding of the relationship between veil wearing and Islam, and the impact of globalization in Morocco.