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A Francophone Maghreb


Admission requirements

This course is available for students of the Humanities Lab
If you have received your propaedeutic diploma within one academic year, your academic results are good and you are a very motivated student, you may apply for a place in the Humanities Lab.


The Maghreb countries (particularly Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia) cannot be understood without a Francophone perspective, from a comparative standpoint. During this seminar and the stay at NIMAR (Dutch Institute in Rabat-Morocco; 5 days), students will gain insight into the multilingual challenges of the cultural and political life in the Maghreb. The lectures will examine the historical and political aspects of the Francophony in the Maghreb, the language policies and the relationships between language, identity and literary production.

Course objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will:

  •     have a thorough understanding of societal, linguistic and literary relations between France and the Maghreb
  •     be able to put France/ Maghreb debates into a historical context;
  •     understand how this knowledge can be applied to linguistic and cultural policies;
  •     present their findings, based on research, to varied types of audience.


Courses of the Humanities Lab are scheduled on Friday afternoon from 13.00 to 17.00 h. For the exact timetable, please visit the following website

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar

  • Excursion

Date of the stay at NIMAR (5 days): 26/06- 30/06/2018
The stay at NIMAR will be prepared by the series of lectures given in Leiden (conceptual and historical approaches; preparation of the interviews and visits in Morocco). The suggested/required reading will offer students a good overview of the current state of knowledge on the francophone past of Morocco and its multilingual challenges (case studies in Rabat and Casablanca). Excursions to various sites of cultural interest and to social organisations in the surroundings of Rabat and Casablanca will be offered to students.
Sub-fields: Linguistic identity, language and society, language and religion, language and political power, language and education, French linguistic and cultural policies in the Arab world, language and literary production.
Accommodation: in the historical centre of Rabat, supervised by the NIMAR.
The stay at the NIMAR in Morocco is an integral (and hence compulsory) part of the course.

Course Load

This course is worth 5 EC (140 hours). Lectures: 4 lectures of 4 hours: 16 NIMAR stay (activities): 34 Literature reading: 30 Assignments & final essay: 60 hours

Assessment method

30% active preparation and participation for the 4 lectures
30% oral preparation and presentations during the stay at NIMAR
40% final paper of 3000 words

The final grade is an average of these three grades. All three exams need to be passed with a 5.0 min
If the final grade is insufficient (lower than a 6), there is the possibility of retaking the final essay. Contact the course lecturer for more information.


Blackboard will be used for:

  • weekly communications about the readings, questions, tasks etc…

  • discussion boards for the preparation of the interviews in Morocco

Reading list

  • Moha Ennaji, Multilingualism, Cultural Identity, and Education in Morocco, Springer, 2005


  • Charis Boutieri, Learning in Morocco: Language Politics and the Abandoned Educational Dream, Series: Public Cultures of the Middle East and North Africa, 2016, Indiana University Press

    (both accessible via the UL)


Students of the Humanities Lab will be registered via uSisby the administration of the Humanities Lab

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable


Karène Sanchez Summerer: e-mail
Humanities Lab office: e-mail


  • Travel and accommodation are partly covered by the university in the form of a scholarship; the estimated amount of student’s contribution for travel and accommodation is approximately 125 euros. All other expenses besides travel and accommodation (i.e. meals, entry fees for visits not included in the program, etc) are to be paid for by the students.

  • Insurance: Each student will need travel insurance; its number will be communicated to the Humanities International Office, Educational and Student Affairs, before departure