With the renewal of the date of “cultural entry”, the question is renewed about the possibility of speaking of a “new cultural year” in the absence of cultural planning, a strategy that unifies the successive efforts of the culture sector, and the priorities of the various sectors that intersect with the guardianship ministry.
During the tenure of the Minister of Culture, Muhammad al-Araj, the ministry announced the launch of the annual opening of the “Cultural Year”; A date that did not last long in light of the successive changes experienced by a ministry that was led by five ministers in six years.
The “cultural entrance”, by definition, is a new year that opens with new productions in the field of writing, publication, intellectual discussion and creative representations; This creates a debate that culminates in cultural and literary prizes that encourage knowledge, the continuity of production and the development of awareness and social taste.
In this interview with Hespress, the electronic newspaper asked Muhammad Al-Maazouz, novelist and professor of political anthropology, about the possibility of talking about whether or not there is a cultural entry into Morocco, the responsibilities associated with it and the need for culture. in Moroccan society.
Can we talk about the presence of cultural input in the country?
This is an important question. We do not know officially if there is a cultural input from the institutions, that is, we do not know if the Ministry of Culture has a vision in this field or not until now.
Today, in particular, it is necessary to have a different cultural input; Because this year is not normal in every way, be it politically, economically or morally. Therefore, attention must be paid to how the intellectual and cultural elements and their presence can anticipate what may happen, and the economic or political approach cannot predict it.
The intellectual and thinker has always been looking to the future and collecting all the dangers that could fall on the country. This is a discussion that needs to be raised and taken into consideration.
Now, America after Corona, has reviewed all its papers on disinterest and lack of investment in culture, given the imbalance that this has caused at the level of values; This is what we noticed in the demonstrations that followed Floyd’s murder, and what seems like the American no longer believes in democracy on a political level, and no longer believes in the values of established institutions. My analyzes discovered that the reason was the lack of interest and the lack of investment in the cultural; Because it is the cultural and artistic fact that establishes that balance between man and institutions, and it is at the bottom of citizenship, and nothing establishes the bottom of citizenship but the cultural and artistic framed by the intellectual.
I wish that our officials at their different levels pay attention to culture, art and thought, but not to an administrative or security alert, but rather it must be scientific, historical and have a dimension at the level of control of balances between the person Moroccan and society.
I must refer to what we have begun to witness of a schism between society and the educated elite, and it is a schizophrenia for a reason, which is that the educated, and I am not saying that it does not play its part, but it is no longer heard, neither by the state nor by society, he is misguided, he is not noticed, and he is despised within the political scene, and I observe with me that all political parties have besieged intellectuals and have marginalized them, in one way or another , and these are very dangerous signs.
If we don’t celebrate the intellectuals of our country, and we don’t listen to the intellectuals, we will pay a very high bill.
When speaking of the absence of cultural input, is it limited only to the institutions responsible for the culture sector, or is the issue also extended to publishers, the media and civil cultural institutions to present a cultural offer that can be officially welcomed by the State? ? ?
The responsibility is not limited only to the Ministry of Culture, since the cultural matter is a State matter and a society matter.
When I say that it is a social issue, the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of National Education and the country’s cultural institutions must mobilize from the Union of Moroccan Writers and other institutions, publishers and intellectuals. There must be convergence between all the components that represent the culture of the country, to promote it.
Here I suggest and hope that the Ministry of Culture does a national debate in which all these people come together to study and discuss what those who are educated or interested in culture can do, to develop a vision.
Now we need a vision, because now there is no clear vision, and the State does not have a cultural vision, and it must be said, and the cultural institutions in turn do not have a cultural vision, but there are scattered intellectuals and thinkers, and each one writes in his own way, and each one thinks in his own way, but unfortunately no agreement has been reached on a unified vision and strategy to advance the cultural issue and make culture a social issue in the country.
That is why I said that the responsibility lies not only with the Ministry of Culture, but with the State and society. That’s why I said that the cultural issue is first and foremost a social issue.
So, what we lack for you is the vision of bringing together the country’s official and civic cultural actors?
Indeed, what unites this vision is the reason for citizenship, and the reason for zeal for the country as a country that should not be qualified only economically and politically, since this is the result of the result, but should be strengthened and qualified. culturally. and technically.
What do we lose in the absence of this vision?
There must be political will on the part of the State and citizen will on the part of cultural actors and cultural institutions in Morocco, and the intellectuals who write and publish must have a practical presence, it is not enough to write a book or an article and nobody will read.
We must reconsider all our cultural strategies, and even the intellectual has to reconsider the writing strategy.
Look with me now at many deviations in society, and look at who fills the arena on Facebook, and who frames and tries to steer most of them in the wrong directions, influencers that have nothing to do with culture or thought. .
It is time that we reconsider what we are at a cultural level and work to form an intercultural vision with all cultural actors, I hope that the Ministry of Culture takes the initiative and calls for a national debate on the matter.