Transnational Religious Governance as Diaspora Politics: Reporming the Moroccan Religious Field Abroad
- Mashriq & Mahjar: Journal of Middle East and North African Migration Studies
- Moise A. Khayrallah Center for Lebanese Diaspora Studies
- Volume 5, Number 1, 2018
- Additional Information
In 2004, the King Mohammed VI of Morocco announced the beginning of a series of fundamental reforms of the main state religious institutions of the country. These reforms were designed to include the over 3.8 million Moroccans living in foreign countries based on the claim that they are a part of a shared transnational religious field. This article analyzes the evolution of the main diaspora policy instruments used by Morocco abroad, especially in the case of France, such as sending delegations of religious personnel during Islamic holidays, funding mosques and Islamic associations, and providing training programs for imams from other countries. I argue that these reforms should be understood as a form of diaspora politics that aims to reinforce the Moroccan state’s ability to govern the religious affairs of its citizens and their descendants abroad with the ultimate goal of maintaining control over the religious field at home.