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In 2004, Moroccan authorities updated the Moroccan Family Code to reflect the needs of modern families. This was considered a revolutionary move at the time. The research presented in this video sets out to investigate how, after ten years, this modernized code has been implemented in people's lives not only in Morocco but especially in the lives of Moroccans residing in European countries. To get a full picture the researchers applied a combination of ethnographic methods and methods from legal studies. MARIE-CLAIRE FOBLETS explains how the scientists analyzed the case law, the response of consulates in European countries to people seeking advice as well as the decision of judges in Morocco. The findings indicate that while the courts were first uneasy with applying the new code they adjusted over time. Furthermore, different national traditions have a major influence on the implementation of the Moroccan Family Code in Europe.


Marie-Claire Foblets is Director of the Department Law & Anthropology at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology in Halle/Saale, Germany, and Honorary Professor of Law & Anthropology at the Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Germany. Her interests include Islam in Europe, religious diversity in a secular context and international family law.
Before joining the Max Planck Society, Foblet held teaching positions at the universities of Antwerp and Brussels as well as an Erasmus lectureship on Comparative Islamic Law at Harvard Law School.
In 2004, she was awarded the Francqui Prize, the most distinguished scientific award in the humanities in Belgium.


Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology

The Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology is one of the world’s leading centres for research in socio-cultural anthropology. Common to all research projects at the Max Planck Institute is the comparative analysis of social change; it is primarily in this domain that its researchers contribute to anthropological theory, though many programmes also have applied significance and political topicality. Fieldwork is an essential part of almost all projects.

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Original publication

Le Code Marocain de la Famille. Incidences au Regard du Droit International Privé en Europe

Foblets Marie-Claire and Carlier Jean-Yves
Published in 2005

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