Such experiences make working-class women distrust men in general. They still have babies with men, but they seldom marry them. A whopping 50% of births to American women without college degrees are non-marital, but only 6% of births to college graduates are. Similar trends can be seen in Europe. In Britain 90% of professional couples wait until they are married before having kids, compared with only half of those who earn the minimum wage. Looking at eight European countries, Brienna Perelli-Harris of the University of Southampton and others found that the less educated a mother is, the more likely she is to have a baby outside marriage.
In 2011, with the Arab revolts, conflict escalated between Imazighen and Islamists across North Africa. Salafi imams openly called for the eradication of non-Arab communities. In Morocco, imams in far-flung villages intimidated women into removing their chin tattoos; zealots desecrated an 8,000-year-old Amazigh carving in the High Atlas Mountains called the “Plaque of the Sun.” Protests erupted in the Rif again—though this time local activists would liaise with their counterparts across the kingdom. At demonstrations across the country the blue, green, and yellow pan-Amazigh flag was raised. The palace preemptively unveiled a new Constitution that promised “decentralization” and enshrined Tamazight as “an official language of the state.” In November 2014, the king declared emphatically that Moroccans of all ethnicities are equal, “with no distinction between the Jibli, the Riffian, the Sahraoui, and the Soussi.” (This public celebration of Morocco’s Amazigh identity—and “African character”—must also be viewed in light of Morocco’s recent return to the African Union, and its efforts to gain both influence in the Sahel and the diplomatic support of sub-Saharan states in the Western Sahara conflict.) The cultural volte-face has indeed been astonishing. Nowadays driving through Morocco, one sees Tifinagh script (the Tamazigh alphabet) on highway signs, banners, and government buildings. Amazigh first names—Tilila, Kahina, Ayur—once frowned upon, if not banned, are now fashionable among middle-class Moroccans. (Those of us born in the 1970s and ’80s were given Egyptian names—Hisham, Rania, Amr—reflecting our parents’ orientation back then.) Amazigh cultural festivals are now organized around the country. Most striking, perhaps, is the resurrection of Abdelkrim, now extolled as a Moroccan hero who fought Spanish and French imperialism. Walking through Tangier’s street markets, one sees his visage on scarves, T-shirts, and keychains. Cap Radio, in its Tarifit broadcasts, plays chaabi and rap songs praising the leader. “Rif-Hop” is now a genre. Abdelkrim’s daughters have become minor celebrities, touring the country speaking about exile and reconciliation. The Riffian revolutionary is slowly becoming a cultural icon, an emblem of an alternative Morocco. Ready to Fight Back? Sign Up For Take Action Now