Moroccan people

Moroccan people

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The Moroccan people are a people that share a common Moroccan culture
Culture of Morocco
Morocco is a country of multi-ethnic groups with a rich culture, civilization, and etiquette. Through Moroccan history, Morocco hosted many people in addition to the indigenous Berbers, coming from both East , South and North . All of which have had an impact on the social structure of Morocco...

, ancestry and speak the Moroccan variant
Moroccan Arabic
Moroccan Arabic is the variety of Arabic spoken in the Arabic-speaking areas of Morocco. For official communications, the government and other public bodies use Modern Standard Arabic, as is the case in most Arabic-speaking countries. A mixture of French and Moroccan Arabic is used in business...

 of the Arabic language
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 or a Berber language as a mother tongue.

In addition to the nearly 32 million Moroccans in Morocco
Morocco
Morocco , officially the Kingdom of Morocco , is a country located in North Africa. It has a population of more than 32 million and an area of 710,850 km², and also primarily administers the disputed region of the Western Sahara...

, there is a large population in France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, Belgium
Belgium
Belgium , officially the Kingdom of Belgium, is a federal state in Western Europe. It is a founding member of the European Union and hosts the EU's headquarters, and those of several other major international organisations such as NATO.Belgium is also a member of, or affiliated to, many...

, Italy
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

, the Netherlands
Moroccan-Dutch
The terms Moroccan-Dutch or Dutch-Moroccans refer to immigrants from Morocco to the Netherlands and their descendants. They are one of the larger allochtoon groups, making up 10.4% of the country's total population of foreign background....

, Spain and smaller groups in United Kingdom, United States and Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

 ( see Moroccan diaspora
Moroccan diaspora
The Moroccan diaspora consists of emigrants from Morocco and their descendants. Of the estimated 4.5 million Moroccans living abroad, roughly two thirds live in Europe; the remainder are distributed throughout the Americas , Australia, Africa , and the countries of the Arab World.-History:Europe...

 ).

Because of wide-ranging diaspora, about estimated 4.5 million Moroccans living abroad and of full or partial Moroccan ancestry live outside of Morocco, most notably in Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

, North America
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

 and many Arabic-speaking countries like Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , commonly known in British English as Saudi Arabia and in Arabic as as-Sa‘ūdiyyah , is the largest state in Western Asia by land area, constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula, and the second-largest in the Arab World...

, the United Arab Emirates
United Arab Emirates
The United Arab Emirates, abbreviated as the UAE, or shortened to "the Emirates", is a state situated in the southeast of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia on the Persian Gulf, bordering Oman, and Saudi Arabia, and sharing sea borders with Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and Iran.The UAE is a...

 and Kuwait
Kuwait
The State of Kuwait is a sovereign Arab state situated in the north-east of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia. It is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the south at Khafji, and Iraq to the north at Basra. It lies on the north-western shore of the Persian Gulf. The name Kuwait is derived from the...

 amongst others.

Ethnic groups and ancestry



Morocco
Morocco
Morocco , officially the Kingdom of Morocco , is a country located in North Africa. It has a population of more than 32 million and an area of 710,850 km², and also primarily administers the disputed region of the Western Sahara...

's population is a mix of Berbers and Arabs. Though the majority of the population is of Berber origin many Moroccans today identify as Arabs. Culturally and genetically the Moroccan population is very homogenous, the distinction between Arabs and Berbers is unaccounted for in the society; it can, however, be made along linguistic lines.
Assuming that it is possible to separate Arabs from Berbers in Morocco, Arabic speakers are believed to be about 66% of the Moroccan population, although this includes people of Berber or mixed descent.

Classical Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 is one of the official languages of Morocco, alongside Berber
Berber
Berber may refer to:*a member of the Berber people**the Berber languages, a family of Afro-Asiatic languages**Berberism, a political-cultural term supporting a distinct Berber identity**Berber calendar**Berber cuisine...

 and is used in limited socio-economic and cultural activities and written newspapers. In July 2011, "Amazigh", a standardized version of all the Berber languages of Morocco, became an official language alongside Arabic.

There has been many influxes of populations in Morocco; first the Phoenicians and Romans
Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome was a thriving civilization that grew on the Italian Peninsula as early as the 8th century BC. Located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, it expanded to one of the largest empires in the ancient world....

 in pre-Islamic periods, then the Arab immigrations in the 8th and 11th-century and finally the Slave trade from Europe and sub-Saharan Africa that occurred throughout the middle-ages up to the 19th-century.

Morocco had in the past a significant Jewish population, but the majority immigrated to Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

, Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

 and North America
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

 since the country's independence. There are only about 5,000 Jews who still live in the country.

Culture



Through Moroccan history
History of Morocco
The History of Morocco spans over 12 centuries, without considering the Classical antiquity. The country was first unified by the Idrisid dynasty in 780, representing the first Islamic state in Africa autonomous from the Arab Empire. Under the Almoravid dynasty and the Almohad dynasty, Morocco...

, the country had many cultural influences (Europe, middle-east and sub-Saharan Africa). The culture of Morocco shares similar traits with that of neighboring countries, particularly Algeria and Tunisia and to a certain extent Spain.

Each region possesses its own uniqueness, contributing to the national culture. Morocco has set among its top priorities the protection of its diversity and the preservation of its cultural heritage.

Languages


Morocco's official languages are Classical Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 and since July 2011, "Amazigh language" which is a standardized version of the Berber languages.

The majority of the population natively speaks Moroccan-Arabic
Moroccan Arabic
Moroccan Arabic is the variety of Arabic spoken in the Arabic-speaking areas of Morocco. For official communications, the government and other public bodies use Modern Standard Arabic, as is the case in most Arabic-speaking countries. A mixture of French and Moroccan Arabic is used in business...

. More than 12 million Moroccans speak Berber — which exists in Morocco in three different dialects (Riff, Shilha, and Central Atlas Tamazight) — either as a first language or bilingually with Moroccan Arabic.

The Hassaniya Arabic is spoken in the southern part of country. Morocco has recently included the protection of Hassaniya in the constitution as part of the July 2011 reforms.

French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 is taught universally and still serves as Morocco's primary language of commerce and economics
Economy of Morocco
Morocco's economy is considered a relatively liberal economy governed by the law of supply and demand. Since 1993, the country has followed a policy of privatization of certain economic sectors which used to be in the hands of the government. Morocco has become a major player in the African...

; it is also widely used in education and government.

Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

 is also spoken by some in the northern part of the country as a foreign language. Meanwhile English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

, is increasingly becoming more popular among the educated particularly in the science fields although its usage remains very limited.