Sundays are usually well-earned rest days at the Legation, especially after perhaps 3 of our busiest days in recent memory. On Thursday and Friday, January 23-24, we hosted our first — but we hope not our last — symposium on “Movement and Migration between Morocco and West Africa,” which addressed a broad range of themes including race and racism, gender, historic and contemporary religious links, cultural links, conflict in the Sahel, and of course migration, both trans-saharan and trans-sahelian. Guest speakers included members of civil society and scholars from Morocco, Mauritania, Senegal, Niger, Cameroon, Holland, Spain and the USA. Thanks to the US Embassy and to the American Institute of Maghrib Studies for their sponsorship, and especially we’d like to thank TALIM Associate Director Yhtimad Bouziane and co-organizer George Bajalia of Columbia University (pictured from left with Senegalese journalist and scholar Eugenie Aw-Ndiaye, Nigerien doctoral candidate Hamidou Nabara from Abdou Mimouni University in Niamey, and Cameroonian Tangier-based author Sali Boba Oumarou).
On a rainy Friday afternoon, January 24, in partnership with the Tangier American Language Center and the US Embassy in Rabat, we welcomed 30 State Department-sponsored English Language Fellows and Regional English Language Officers from the Middle East-North Africa region for a tour focussing on US-Moroccan historic and cultural ties.
On Saturday afternoon, January 25, we hosted our partners from Tangier’s Momkin Arts Cooperative along with youth from the Birchifa neighborhood of Tangier for both a tour of the Legation by our Curator Mohammed Jadidi as well as for a workshop on street performance, complete with unicycles!
And finally, on Saturday evening, January 25, a packed house braved pouring rainstorms to see Argentine actress Charo Beltrán Nuñez (pictured), French actress Anne Bourrel, and Tangier musician Hamza Belkhati for “Le Dernier Invité,” an evening of performance, reading and dance organized by our friends from the Librairie les insolites. Thanks also to technical producer Ayoub Lahlouh for coordinating this magical evening with only one night for rehearsals.
Of course each of the three days, our classroom calendar was full with Women’s Arabic Literacy classes (in partnership with the Fondation Tanja Al Medina) and our “STEEM” English classes for Medina scholarship recipients from public middle schools, in partnership again with the Tangier American Language Center.
Our deepest thanks again to all who participated in our joined us for these very special activities.