By Omar Bihmidine
By Omar Bihmidine
Morocco World News
Sidi Ifni, Morocco, March 14, 2013
Reading among Moroccans has been in remarkable decline. While some specialists attribute this decline to the apathy Moroccans evince towards reading, other researchers point out that the educational system has not served its purpose, which is to develop a passion for reading in Moroccan schools.
Earlier this week, Medi 1 national TV interviewed several Moroccans, ranging from students, teachers to sellers of books. Among the main questions the interview revolved around were: Do you read? Why do people desist from reading? Why is reading absent in Moroccans’ everyday lives?
Some students tried to find excuses and justification when explaining their lack of interest in reading.
“I have never entered a library; I have never read a book. I think only those who can afford to buy books read,” a Moroccan dropout told Medi 1 TV.
“We do not read books at our ease because we are overwhelmed with our lessons,” a Moroccan student told the channel.
“We are short of public libraries; also, most students do not master French and English well enough so that they can read in these languages,” another student said.
On the other hand, several interviewed teachers, professors and bookstore keepers provided a different perspective on this phenomenon.
“The crux of the matter lies in that our kids are not taught to read at home, especially during their primary school days. We teachers must impress upon pupils the love for books, “a primary school teacher told Medi1 TV.
“It is a pity that we do not earn a living by selling books. Very few Moroccans buy and read books. Yet, we still fight to preserve the culture of reading books,” a bookstore keeper said.
In this regard, during the interview, Tarik, the director of Tarik Publishing House, pointed out that “many libraries in Morocco have run short of books. In the absence of a serious policy on the part of the government, we are facing a real, cultural crisis.”
“No importance is given to books. Unfortunately, libraries are empty of readers,” the director added.