Jamila Hassoune: from a library in Marrakech to a Story Caravane travelling on and on

marrakech.librarianSometimes you get to hear beautiful stories that you know you would love to hear about every day. That’s the real story of Jamila Hassoune and of her great love for books and stories. More than this, it’s about women, Africa, Islam and Beauty…

Since 1994 Jamila has managed her family bookstore, Hassoune Books, in her hometown of Marrekech as the only woman traveller bookseller in Morocco. Aware of the high illiteracy rate in surrounding rural areas Jamila began to single handedly transport books every month to school children in the High Atlas Mountains. During that time, she discovered that youth were thirsty for knowledge.
In 1995, Jamila’s interest in reaching out to youth became formalized as she founded the NGO “Club du Livre du Lecture “ dedicated to providing book discussions, author conferences, and cultural space to Moroccoan communities while at the same time bring these communities to share knowledge to the rural areas. As a result, Jamila created and began to organise the Caravan Civique in collaboration with Fatema Mernissi, aimed at developing a democratic cultural and artistic network bridging the gap between urban and rural areas, spreading dialogue and encouragement to young Moroccan people so that they can find alternatives to immigration or apathy.


The idea was simple, to bring together intellectuals, artistes and actors of the civil society to the field. After the successful organisation of some Caravan Civique meetings, Jamila has branched off to launch the first Caravane du Livre, which returns to the heart of her initial mission of the travelling bookseller. It essence is communicating knowledge in many forms, beginning with the richness of the book.


To find out more: JAMILA HASSOUNE


About Odile Milton

I travel through words whenever possible. Odile Milton is my signature on the web as I wanted an alter ego to indicate only my writings and works, not my personal life. Odile like the dancer in black swan, and Milton from the novel An old-fashioned girl. View all posts by Odile Milton

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