Moroccan Singer Ahmed Chawki Writes New Song About Female Empowerment

Ahmed-Chawki

Morocco is a country where Islam dominates politics and society. But unlike other Muslim countries in North Africa and even in the Middle East, there have been significant strides made in its constitution and in other laws that show a glimmer of progression, especially in the area of women’s rights.

In 2004 Morocco rewrote its code of family law, establishing the right to divorce by mutual consent, placing limits on polygamy and raising the minimum marriage age for women to 18 from 15. But no changes were made with respect to inheritance. That part of the law still states that men receive double the inheritance than women. Some feel this too may change as the law was originally written when men were traditionally the head of the household. Now that it is more common to see women as family breadwinners, the current inheritance statutes could change.

In 2011 the country passed a new constitution guaranteeing gender equality. Many of these changes are thanks to feminist groups pushing for change and equality. While there are still many judges finding loopholes to get around the progressive parts of the constitution, some say it could take up to 30 years (an entire generation) for equality to become commonplace.

But it’s not just inheritance law that feminists and activist groups want re-examined, it is also the rampant violence against women perpetuated because of laws that often alleviate men from certain types of prosecutions. The general picture is that women are fighting for equal status in society, and while there are some small advances being made, the culture has to change as a whole, not just the laws. How do you change a culture that has been doing life a certain way, handed down from generation to generation, for so long?

The equality has to seep into every part of life, including art and entertainment. Which is why we think Moroccan singer Ahmed Chawki’s new song, dedicated to the advancement and empowerment of women sends a huge message to Moroccan men. Heck, it sends a great message to mean all over the Middle East and his fans elsewhere.

ahmed-chawki

For those not familiar with Ahmed’s work, he rose to international fame in 2o13 with his song ‘Habibi I love You’ a collaboration featuring Pitbull and produced by his Moroccan-Swedish friend and producer Red One, most known for his work with artists such as Jennifer Lopez, Lady Gaga, Lil Wayne and more. The video to that song, to date, has over 29 million views on Youtube. (Side note: we often wish we could hire Pitbull to be featured on GTHQ like in one of the many tracks he appears on, as it seems he is the winning ticket to many anything go viral).

Ahmed is back with another track that is no doubt going to viral and we are gunning for this one in a big. It is called ‘Kayna Wla Makaynach’ translated to ‘Right or Wrong’ and the message is all about female empowerment.

He told The National in an interview to promote it that he felt it was “about time” he released a song like this and moved away from his standard romantic tracks.

“I felt like it was time to ­really talk about love from a different perspective. It’s not just about feelings and what we dream it to be, but a focus on everyday realities and how we deal with each other,” he said.

“I wanted to expand on how I talked about women – they are also our mothers, our sisters and our colleagues. They demand our total respect.”

moroccan-women

That’s not exactly something you hear from a male in a Muslim country every day, which is why we are so thrilled to share these types of messages in order to break down stereotypes and promote a new generation rising up in the Arab world who are fighting for gender equality on many fronts.

The lyric video uploaded to Youtube already has over 4 million views and is becoming a huge hit in Morocco as well as Lebanon.

Here are some of the lyrics which show how he is trying to challenge the existing patriarchal mindset:

Nobody wants a girl
That has known and dated other guys before them
Kayna wla makainash?
– Am I right or wrong?
And even the girl wouldn’t want to be a victim
To have ‘darling’ only as a name
Am I right or wrong?

Are you that far gone? you want a good girl?
While you’re a player that needs surveillance
If you value yourself, girl, then your shall always be good
Decency is not old-fashioned
Am I right or wrong?

Listen to me very carefully, If you lie,
They will lie to your sister as payback
Am I right or wrong?
And to sum up, girl, if you were careful enough
You wouldn’t be tempted easily

We’d love to see him pushing the boundaries even further with his lyrics and being a leader for his generation not just on the topic of relationships (although he is well known for his romantic songs). It would be cool to see a Moroccan man showing his peers why treating women as equals is not just good for them personally, but for the country as a whole. When women are empowered communities thrive, families survive and economies grow.

Here’s hoping the song will continue to get such a positive response that he will join the feminist activist groups in Morocco looking to change laws that allow them to progress even further and set an example for other Muslim countries.

Here is the lyric video to ‘Kayna Wla Makaynach’:


 

One Comment

  1. I would like express my gratitude to GirltalkHQ because i heared the Owowsome song like ‘Habibi I love you” but i was not familiar the artist Ahmed Chawki.

    I have thanked to Ahmed Chawki for his nice words like “I wanted to expand on how I talked about women – they are also our mothers, our sisters and our colleagues. They demand our total respect.”

    But why Ahmed Chawki seemed to think we are not giving total respect to our Mother, sister, wife and colleagues?

    Women empowering is broad topic to discuss, not depend on only single topic. As he is singer, all songs are not singing practically though his song will familair we are hoping. 🙂

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