By Mohamed El Aazouzi
By Mohamed El Aazouzi
Morocco World News
Rabat, July 2, 2012
The issue of sexual freedom has really become a very controversial issue in the Moroccan press these days. Since its emergence as a new topic within the political scene, a lot of debates have been produced about the issue oscillating between accepting it and/or refusing it for its anti-religion attitudes. Throughout history, sexuality has proven itself as an efficient discourse of masses’ conscious manipulation. This controversy might be utilized as a misleading discursive institution that aims at restricting the individual freedom within the illusion of “freedom” itself.
It is really very problematic when it comes to talk about sexuality for its importance as a biological condition for saving the human race from the one hand, and for its instinctual nature from the other hand. As the founding father of the theory of psychoanalysis Sigmund S. Freud made it clear in his controversial book “Civilization and Its Discontents” (1929), those whom we see as neurotics are those who failed to endure their sexual frustrations. To put it differently, civilization aims at bringing happiness and gratification to individual subjects at the expense of the very individual freedom.
Civilized societies create laws to regulate individuals’ conducts within certain discursive institutions and orders. For example, utilizing different institutions, “civilized” societies restrict public nudity, homosexuality and lesbianism. One of these repressive state apparatuses is the institution of sexuality. The process of institutionalizing is as problematic as it is contradictory.
Personally speaking, I believe that the current government has recognized the importance of this new, but old, weapon which targets the individual psyche in a very subversive way. In our conservative society an individual’s sexual freedom, by means of the “Article 490,” is repressed and forbidden outside the institution of marriage. Furthermore, under this current partial repression of sexual freedom, individuals are under the threat of developing abnormal or neurotic personalities. Sex for these individual becomes the center of their life and thought which may hinder the process of social, cultural and scientific development. These unpredictable side effects of sexual restriction are found to dominate the individual consciousness.
When sexuality becomes the ultimate goal of human existence – which is the case here– we announce the revival of a primitive side of our animalism that makes us docile subjects–to use M. Foucault’s term. Within this ambivalent situation, individuals suffer a split of personality. They are torn between satisfying their sexual instinct – which is a must for any normal individual – and the religious and legal limitations.
The media also has a great role in this situation. With an impulsive use of the discourse of sexuality in different movies, including Mexican, Egyptian, Turkish and Syrian movies and so on, people’s understanding and conception of sexuality has been domesticated and tainted. What is sexuality? Is it a human activity as we know it; or is it a commoditized hyper-activity as they depict it to us in movies? Under this recurrent use, media normalizes and at the same time de-familiarizes it. In other words, sexuality turns to be that desirable far reached target of the layman.
More than that, disguised behind a “legal-religious” anti individual freedom discourse, the political use of the issue of “sexual freedom” in Morocco aims at dominating the individual frame of thought. In the current situation of the Moroccan government, sexuality is the most effective weapon that may disorient the intellectual critical attention. As a discourse, it is capable of scattering the attention of the masses from other important issues such as the sudden increase in the price of fuel. Also, it can be said that this problematic issue under scrutiny here is a prelude that foregrounds the way to a new coming discourse that is related to Ramadan. So, let us be aware of what is going on around us.
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Morocco World News’ editorial policy.
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