Middle East Studies

CALL FOR PAPERS: Moroccan cinema uncut: local perspectives, transnational dialogues

March 4, 2016

Marrakech, December 2-10, 2016

Will Higbee (University of Exeter, UK) & Florence Martin (Goucher College, USA)


For the past two decades, Moroccan cinema has emerged as both a viable model for the cinemas of small nations in the Maghrebi region and beyond. This international symposium seeks to tease out the various dimensions of its success as well as the challenges faced by Moroccan producers, directors, distributors and policy-makers in the age of digital disruption.


Part of a three-year international collaborative project funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (UK), this symposium is organized in association with École Supérieure des Arts Visuels (Marrakesh), the London Film School, The University of Exeter (UK), Goucher College (USA), the Marrakech International Film Festival (Morocco) and the Africa in Motion Film Festival (Edinburgh, UK). In keeping with the aims of the project, it will bring together academics, cinema professionals, policy-makers, and critics. It will also run in conjunction with next year’s edition of the International Film Festival in Marrakech (expected to take place December 2-10, 2016). Participants in the symposium will be able to gain professional accreditation to the festival, and sessions will be programmed to allow maximum access to festival screenings and related activities.


We welcome submissions of panels, individual papers, and round tables focusing on relevant debates on current Moroccan cinema, including the following:


  • Transnational modes of (co-)production
  • Independent filmmaking in the age of digital disruption
  • Formal and informal networks of distribution
  • The role(s) of the CCM
  • National and international festivals in and outside Morocco
  • Diasporic filmmakers and audiences
  • The role of the critic (in)forming the identity of Moroccan cinema
  • Women directors and the politics of gender representation
  • Genres
  • Stars
  • Protecting and promoting (trans)national cinema
  • Morocco as an international shooting location


We welcome proposals in the form of abstracts in English or French by March 15, 2016, to be sent electronically to bothw.e.higbee@exeter.ac.uk and fmartin@goucher.edu. Decisions about acceptance of abstracts and participation in the symposium will be taken by April 15, so that participants have ample time to secure funding for a conference in Morocco.