Journalists’ Arrest in Morocco: Censorship or Criminalization of Violence Against Women?


In recent years, Morocco has witnessed trials that dangerously intertwine sex and politics. Notably, several journalists have been sentenced to prison for charges including human trafficking, abuse of power for sexual purposes, rape, adultery, or prostitution. Consequently, these trials have plunged a segment of the Moroccan population into a moral conflict: whether to support the freedom of expression of bold journalists or to denounce the sexual violence perpetrated against women. In this conference paper, I aim to demonstrate that the criminalization of journalists, among others, for sexual violations is part of the patriarchal continuum that involves the appropriation of women’s bodies. To achieve this, I conducted interviews with detainees' family members, ex-detainees, and activists. I also consulted their writings and supplemented these testimonies with publications from human rights associations. Applying discourse analysis, I examined the rhetoric and practices of the Moroccan state regarding sexual violence. I adopt feminist approaches to the state, which view state practices as grounded in specific concepts of masculinity and femininity. The outcome is the institutionalization of hierarchy in both private and public spheres, the verticality of social and political relations, and the repression of voices critical of the state’s regime. Furthermore, this presentation emphasizes that the study of all forms of power must necessarily include theories of sexuality and gender hierarchy. In other words, sexuality and gender relations are fully integrated into the realms of politics.

Author Information
Osire Glacier, Athabasca University, Canada

Paper Information
Conference: KAMC2023
Stream: Gender

This paper is part of the KAMC2023 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Glacier O. (2023) Journalists’ Arrest in Morocco: Censorship or Criminalization of Violence Against Women? ISSN: 2436-0503 – The Kyoto Conference on Arts, Media & Culture 2023: Official Conference Proceedings
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon