Morocco: Dreams of Trespass:Tales of a Harem Childhood by Fatima Mernissi

This book is a fascinating read about the author’s childhood and life in Morocco. For someone as ignorant of Morocco history, traditions, and people as I am,this work offered a lot to think and learn about.

The tale spins like a fairy-tale,bewitching and at times frustrating the reader. The frustrations of the women who can’t leave the gated courtyard and have to ask their husband for permission to go anywhere is tangible. At the same way, it is clear that there are ways to disobey and slip out of the house, without being openly confrontational.

The description of domestic harem explains the reasoning behind this institution, and clearly shows that harem was created to offer shelter for divorcees, orphans, and unmarried female relatives.

The story introduces a multi-generational household, divided into “traditional” and “modern” camps, and multiple ways to demonstrate their beliefs and ways to express their opinion through cooking or embroidery patterns.

Delicious food, beauty treatments, home produced entertainments add to making this story a touching and fascinating read.

It is a praise song to the feminism in its best form in which women can be strong without losing their femininity.

Take a look for yourself: