Morocco: An Islamic Globalizing Monarchy within the Elusive Phenomenon of Arab Spring

in Oriente Moderno
Restricted Access
Get Access to Full Text
Rent on DeepDyve

Have an Access Token?

Enter your access token to activate and access content online.

Please login and go to your personal user account to enter your access token.


Have Institutional Access?

Access content through your institution. Any other coaching guidance?


Far from taking place in a vacuum, in Morocco the 2011 constitutional revision was assessed both from an internal political perspective and within the broader context of what has come to be called the ‘Arab Spring’. In this manner, the 2011 Moroccan Constitution has indeed marked an unprecedented change, declaring the State’s adherence to the protection of human rights, which are strictly related to the Western history of ‘secular constitutionalism’. Yet, in order to better understand the constitutional transition, one has to consider the religious characteristic of Moroccan monarchy which, on the other hand, makes it a prototype of a ‘globalizing monarchy’, especially within the context of mena (Middle East and Nord African) region.

The Moroccan constitutional transition can in fact be seen as a peculiar tool for taking into account endogenous and exogenous factors respectively. On the one hand, it allows us to investigate how an Islamic specific legal tradition interacts with some principles that represent the pillars of constitutional democracies and that, as such, have been universally recognised; at least in the West. On the other, the exceptionalism of ‘Moroccan spring’ lets us to evaluate how these very principles are contextualized in a peculiar context of mena region; by which, for the same reasons, one can draw more general considerations concerning the relationship between the pressing process of globalization and post-colonial Muslim-majority States.

Morocco: An Islamic Globalizing Monarchy within the Elusive Phenomenon of Arab Spring

in Oriente Moderno



AlicinoFrancesco “Constitutionalism as a Peaceful ‘Site’ of Religious Struggles” Global Jurist 2010 10 1 34

AlicinoFrancesco BonellaC. Decaro “Religione e costituzionalismo occidentale: osmosi e reciproche influenze” Tradizioni religiose e tradizioni costituzionali. L’islam e l’Occidente 2013 Roma Carocci 54 113

An-Na’imAbdullahi Ahmed “Human Rights, Universality and Sovereignty: The Irrelevance and Relevance of Sharia” Global Policy 2014 4 401 408

ArieffAlexis “Morocco: Current Issues. Analyst in African Affairs” Congressional Research Service 2013 October 18 1 20

AyubiNazih Political Islam. Religion and Politics in the Arab World 1991 London and New York Routledge

BenchemsiAhmed DiamondLarryPlattnerMarc F. “Morocco: Outfoxing the Opposition” Democratization and Authoritarianism in the Arab World 2014 Baltimore Johns Hopkins University Press

BenhabibSeyla The Rights of Others. Aliens Residents and Citizens 2004 Cambridge Cambridge University Press

BenhabibSeyla PostR. Another Cosmopolitanism 2006 Oxford Oxford University Press With commentaries by J. Waldron B. Honig; Will Kymlicka (edited and introduced by)

BenhabibSeyla “Another Universalism: On the Unity and Diversity of Human Rights” Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association 2007 81 7 32

BenhabibSeyla Dignity in Adversity. Human Rights in Turbulent Times 2011 Cambridge Polity Press

BouchardGérardTaylorCharles Building the Future. A time for Reconciliation 2008 Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec

Brahm LeveyGeoffreyModoodTariq Secularism Religion and Multicultural Citizenship 2008 Cambridge Cambridge University Press

BrasJean-Philippe “La réforme du code de la famille au Maroc et en Algérie: quelles avancées pour la démocratie?” Critique internationale 2007 37 93 125

ChérifRachida Le makhzen politique au Maroc: hier & aujourd’hui 1988 Casablanca, Afrique orient.

ChambergeatPaul “Le référendum Constitutionnel du 7 décembre 1962 au Maroc” Annuaire de l’Afrique du Nord 1964 1 167 205

Chijioke NjokuRaphael Cultural and Custom of Morocco 2006 Connecticut-London Greenwood Press Westport

ClaisseAlain SantucciJean-Claude “Le makhzen aujourd’hui” Le Maroc actuel. Une modernisation au miroir de la tradition? 1992 Paris Institut de recherches et d’études sur le monde arabe et musulman, Éditions du CNRS

CorraoFrancesca Maria “Ijtihad’ and ‘Relevance of Sharia’ to Contextualize Universal Human Rights Discourse” Global Policy 2014 4 409 410

CorraoFrancesca Maria Le rivoluzioni arabe. La transizione mediterranea 2011 Milano Mondadori

DalmassoEmanuela “Surfing the Democratic Tsunami in Morocco: Apolitical Society and the Reconfiguration of a Sustainable Authoritarian Regime” Mediterranean Politics 2012 17 2 217 232

DalmassoEmanuelaCavatortaFrancesco “Democracy, Civil Liberties and the Role of Religion after the Arab Awakening: Constitutional Reforms in Tunisia and Morocco” Mediterranean Politics 2013 18 2 225 241

De BurcaGráinneGerstenbergOliver “The Denationalization of Constitutional Law” Harvard International Law Journal 2006 47 243 262

Decaro BonellaCarmela PföstlEva “La nuova Costituzione del Marocco” Marocco. Il regno del dialogo 2014 Roma, Bordeaux 15 104

Durham Jr.W. ColeFerrariSilvioCianittoCristianaThayerDonlu Law Religion Constitution. Freedom of Religion Equal Treatment and the Law 2013 London Ashgate

EickelmanDale F. Moroccan Islam: Tradition and Society in a Pilgrimage Center 1942 Austin University of Texas Press

EspositoRoberto Termini della politica. Comunità immunità biopolitica 2008 Milano Mimesis

FakhryRiyad FerrariAlessandro “Diritto e religione in Marocco” Diritto e religione nell’Islam mediterraneo. Rapporti nazionale sulla salvaguardia della libertà religiosa. Un paradigma alternativo? 2012 Bologna ilMulino 190 200

FernándezMolina “The Monarchy vs. the 20 February Movement: Who Holds the Reins of Political Change in Morocco?” Mediterranean Politics 2011 16 3 436

FerrajoliLuigi Principia iuris Teoria del diritto e della democrazia 2007 Roma-Bari Laterza

FerrareseMaria Rosa “When National Actors Become Transnational: Transjudicial Dialogue between Democracy and Constitutionalism” Global Jurist 2009 9 1 30

GardbaumStephen “Human Rights as International Constitutional Rights” The European Journal of International Law 2008 19 749 768

GlennPatrick Legal Traditions of the World. Sustainable Diversity in Law 2010 Oxford-New York Oxford University Press

HammoudiAbdellah Master and Disciple: The Cultural Foundations of Moroccan Authoritarianism 1997 Chicago University of Chicago Press

HashasMohammed “Moroccan Exceptionalism Examined: Constitutional Insights pre- and post-2011” Iai Working Papers 2013 December 13 34

HeldDavidCoates UlrichsenKristian “The Arab Spring and the Changing Balance of Global Power” openDemocracy 2014 February 26 2 1 10

HenryClementSpringborgRobert Globalization and the Politics of Development in the Middle East 2001 Cambridge Cambridge University Press

HiskettMervyn The Course of Islam in Africa 1994 Edinburgh Edinburgh University

HoffmanKatherine We Share Walls Language Land and Gender in Berber Morocco 2007 Oxford Blackwell Publishing

HoweMarvine The Islamist Awakening and Other Challenges 2005 Oxford-New York University Press

JofféGeorge “Morocco’s Reform Process: Wider Implications” Mediterranean Politics 2009 14 2 151 164

KlabbersJanPetersAnneUlfsteinGeir The Constitutionalization of International Law 2011 Oxford Oxford University Press

KleinleinThomas “Between Myths and Norms: Constructivist Constitutionalism and the Potential of Constitutional Principles in International Law” Nordic Journal of International Law 2012 81 79 132

KohstallFlorian ÖzdalgaElisabethPerssonSune “Morocco’s Monarchical Legacy and its Capacity to Implement Social Reforms” Contested Sovereignties: Government and Democracy in Middle Eastern and European Perspectives 2010 Swedish Research Institute in Istanbul, I.B. Tauris 197 208

KratzCorinne “We’ve Always Done It Like This... Except for a Few Details: ‘Tradition’ and ‘Innovation’ in Okiek Ceremonies” Comparative Studies in Society and History 1993 35 30 65

LarouiAbdallah Esquisses historiques 1992 Casablanca Centre Culturel Arabe

López GarcíaBarnabé “Le Maroc et le printemps arabe dans un monde en plein changement” iemed 2012 6 40

López GarcíaBarnabé “La question électorale au Maroc: réflexions sur un demi siècle de processus électoraux au Maroc” Revue Marocaine des Sciences Politiques et Sociales 2013 4 35 63

MacDonaldRonald St. JohnJohnstonDouglas M. Towards World Constitutionalism 2005 Leiden-Boston Martinus Nijhoff

MadaniMohamedMaghraouiDrissZerhouniSaloua The 2011 Moroccan Constitution: A Critical Analysis 2012 Strömsborg International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance

MaffettoneSebastiano DottoriRiccardo “It is Reasonable to Be Reasonable? An Investigation into Rawls Theory of Reasonableness” Reason and Reasonableness 2005 Müster List Verlag 407 440

MaffettoneSebastiano “Rawls: 40 Years Later (1971-2011)” Philosophy and Social Criticism 2012 38 9 901 915

MaffettoneSebastiano CevaEmanuelaRossiEnazo “Global Justification and Local Legitimation” Justice Legitimacy and Diversity 2013 London Routledge 139 158

MaffettoneSebastiano BongiovanniGiorgioSartorGiovanniValentiniChiara “Global Legitimation and Reasonableness” Reasonableness and Law 2009 Dordrecht–New York Springer 146 161

MaghraouiDriss “Introduction: Interpreting Reform in Morocco” Mediterranean Politics 2009 14 2 143 149

MaghraouiDriss “Constitutional reforms in Morocco: between consensus and subaltern politics” The Journal of North African Studies 2011 16 4 679 699

ManciniSusannaRosenfeldMichael Constitutional Secularism in an Age of Religious Revival 2014 Oxford Oxford University Press

MasbahMohammed “Moving towards Political Participation. The Moderation of Moroccan Salafis since the Beginning of the Arab Spring” swp Comments 2013 January 8 p.

MezranKarimColomboSilviaVan GenutgenSaska L’Africa mediterranea 2011 Roma Donzelli

MuqtadarRachid “Reflections on the Justice and Development Party’s Experience of Political Rule in Morocco” acrps Research Papers 2013 3 5 17

Murzik KoboOusman Unveiling Modernity in Twentieth-Century West African Islamic Reform 2012 Leiden Brill

ØstebøTerje “Claims for Authority at the Shrine of Shaykh Hussein, Ethiopia” Journal of Islamic Studies 2014 1 27

PahujaSundhya Decolonising International Law. Development Economic Growth and the Politics of Universality 2011 Cambridge-New York Cambridge University Press

ParolinGianluca Citizenship in the Arab World Kin Religion and Nation-State 2009 Amsterdam Amsterdam University Press

PennellRichard Morocco. From Empire to Independence 2003 Oxford Oneworld

PföstlEva “Il movimento berbero in Algeria e Marocco: democrazia, società civile, Stato e diritti delle minoranze” Società civile e minoranze tra tradizione e trasformazione nell’area del Medio Oriente e del Nord Africa 2011 Roma Apes

PföstlEva Diversità culturale e linguistica in Marocco: il caso Amazigh e la questione del Sahara Occidentale Marocco. Il regno del dialogo 2014 Roma, Bordeaux 239 268

PrickettStephen Modernity and the Reinvention of Tradition: Backing Into the Future 2013 Cambridge Cambridge University Press

RobinsonWaldman “Tradition as a Modality of Change: Islamic Examples” History of Religions 1986 25 318 340

RosenfeldMichael RosenfeldMichaelManciniSusanna “Recasting Secularism as One Conception of the Good Among Many in a Post-Secular Constitutional Polity” Constitutional Secularism in an Age of Religious Revival 2014 Oxford Oxford University Press 79 110

Saint-ProtCharlesRouvilloisFrédéric L’exception marocaine 2013 Paris Elipses

SajóAndrás RosenfeldMichaelManciniSusanna “Preliminaries to a Concept of Constitutional Secularism” Constitutional Secularism in an Age of Religious Revival 2014 Oxford Oxford University Press 54 78

SaterJames Civil Society and Political Change in Morocco 2007 London-New York Routledge

SaterJames N. “Reforming the Rule of Law in Morocco: Multiple Meanings and Problematic Realities” Mediterranean Politics 2009 14 2 181 193

SchumacherTobias “In the Name of His Majesty: Morocco’s Parliamentary Elections of 2011” ipris Maghreb Bulletin 2011 12 11 13

SchwöbelChristine Global Constitutionalism in International Legal Perspective 2011 Leiden-Boston Martinus Nijhoff

SlaughterAnne-MarieBurke-WhiteWilliam “The Future of International Law Is Domestic (or, The European Way of Law)” Harvard International Law Journal 2006 47 327 352

SteinerHenryAlstonPhilipGoodmanRyan International Human Rights in Context 2008 Oxford Oxford University Press

StormLise Democratization in Morocco. The Political Elite and Struggles for Power in the Post-Independence State 2007 London-New York Routledge

TaylorCharles A Secular Age 2007 Cambridge, Ma – London Harvard University Press

TozyMohammed Monarchie et islam politique au Maroc 1999 Paris Presses de Sciences Po

VenturaAlberto FioritaNicola “Le Rivoluzioni prevedibili. Per una analisi storica delle ‘Primavere arabe’.” Transizioni e democrazia dei Paesi del Mediterraneo e del Vicino Oriente 2014 Cosenza Periferia 333 344 et alii

VincentAndrew Nationalism and Particularity 2002 Cambridge Cambridge University Press

WalkerNeil KinleyDavidSadurskiWojciechWaltonKevin “Universalism and Particularism in Human Rights: Trade-Off or Productive Tension?” Human Rights. Old Problems New Possibilities 2013 Cheltenham UK-Northampton, MA, USA Edward Elgar Publishing 89 112

WalzerMichael PetersenGrethe “National and Universe” The Tanner Lectures on Human Values 1989 Salt Lake City University of Utah Press 509 556

WeatcroftStephen “Not ‘Revolution’, just Democratic Revolution” openDemocracy 2011 May 2

WeilerJoseph “The Geology of International Law: Governance, Democracy and Legitimacy” Zeitschrift für ausländisches öffentliches und Völkerrecht 2004 64 547 562

Zvan ElliottKatja “Reforming the Moroccan Personal Status Code: A Revolution for Whom?” Mediterranean Politics 2009 14 2 213 227


Laroui (1992): 41; Ayubi (1991): 46.


Sater (2007); Hammoudi (1997). To this respect Hammoudi noted that King derived his prestige from his religious descent and the oath of allegiance as well as from other three other factors: ‘an apparatus of coercion devoted to the monarch; a multifaceted struggle against the urban political forces that grew out of the struggle for independence (basically a petty and middle bourgeoisie supporting the ideal of reform and progress); and an alliance with the rural notables’ (p. 25).


Held and Ulrichsen (2014): 1-10; Fiorita et alii (eds) (2014); López García (2012): 6-40; Corrao (2011); Mezran (2011); Weatcroft (2011).


Klabbers Anne Peters; Geir Ulfstein (2011); Thomas Kleinlein (2012): 79-132; Christine E.J. Schwöbel (2011); Ferrarese (2009): 1-30; Gardbaum (2008): 749-768; Búrca and Gerstenberg (2006): 243-262; Macdonald and Johnston (2005).


Chijioke Njoku (2006).


Sajó (2014): 54-78; Rosenfeld (2014): 79-110.


Benhabib (2004).


Saint-Prot and Rouvillois (eds) (2013); Hashas (2013): 10.


Kohstall (2010): 205.


Gadamer (2004): 301-302.


Mancini and Rosenfeld (2014); Levey and Modood (2008); Bouchard and Taylor (2007).


Glenn (2010): 24-35.


Esposito (2008): 117; Ferrajoli (2007): 888; Alicino (2013): 54.


Claisse (1992): 285: ‘Les populations des villes et des campagnes l’utilisent couramment pour désigner l’État et ses agents. Le mot apparaît aussi parfois dans la bouche d’un haut dirigeant qui utilise la formule « Dar Makhzen » à propos du Roi et de son entourage et plus généralement le palais Royal’. See also Chérif (1988).


Sater (2009): 184.


Maghraoui (2011): 680.


Maghraoui (2011): 681.


Joffé (2009): 156.


Ventura (2014): 333-344.


Fernández Molina (2011): 436.


Zvan Elliott (2009): 213-227.


Kohstall (2010): 205.


Arieff (2013).


For more details Maghraoui (2011): 687-691.


Maghraoui (2009): 144.


Madani Maghraoui; Zerhouni (2012): 16; Kohstall (2010): 200-204.


Masbah (2013): 6-7; López García (2013): 35-63; Muqtadar (2013): 5-17; Schumacher (2011): 11-13.


Madani Maghraoui; Zerhouni (2012): 6-10.


Benchemsi (2014): 343.


Fakhry (2012): 190-200.


Hoffman (2007); Pföstl (2011); Pföstl (2014): 239-268.


Henry; Springborg (2001): 35-56.


Howe (2005): 124-125; Hiskett (1994): 2; Pennell (2003): 41.


Storm (2007): 150-162.


Bras (2007): 93-125.


An-Na’im (2014): 401-408; Corrao (2014): 409-410; Walker (2013): 89-112; Steiner Alston and Goodman (2008): 517-550; Slaughter and Burke-White (2006): 327-352.


Maffettone (2013): 139-158.


Maffettone (2012): 905.


Maffettone (2005): 432.


Maffettone (2013): 157.


Walzer (1989): 536. See also Vincent (2002).


Benhabib (2011): 138.


Decaro Bonella (2014): 15-104.


Prickett (2013).


Handler; Linnekin (1984): 273-290.


Østebø (2014): 3-5.


Kobo (2012).


Glenn (2010): 24.


Pahuja (2011): 25.


Kratz (1993): 30-65.


Gushfield (1967): 351-36.


Benhabib (2007): 7-32.


Alicino (2010): 1-34.

Index Card

Content Metrics

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 11 11 5
Full Text Views 12 12 12
PDF Downloads 4 4 4
EPUB Downloads 0 0 0