Fez: A

place in Moroccan history

October 7 to October 10, 2008, Al Akhawayn University organized these special days about the historical development of Fez. During this occasion, a number of Professors all around Morocco participated through giving interesting lectures that touches on different aspects of the establishment of Fez. As one of the most outstanding medieval cities in the Arab world, some presentations tried to depict the city of fez as Morocco's ancient center of learning and the arts. In essence,

this explains so many facts about this Moroccan city and the special characteristics attributed to it. The fact that Fez has always been associated with Jewish people, for example, makes its historical evolution unique to so many people. ``Today, we cannot talk about Fes without talking about the existence of Jewish people in places such as mellah`` said Simon Levy. The influence of the Jewish community is very much seen through the commercial aspect and it played a significant role in most of the cultural life of Morocco. The nouvelle ville of Fez is another important part of this city. It is said that the

nouvelle ville was originally constructed for French, and it is located far away from the medina. ``Fez speaks in symbols. Few places on Earth seem so imbued with buried meanings: in the patterns of hand-knotted carpets; in the tattooed faces of Berber peasant women; in the cosmic swirls of carved plaster in its architecture; in the voices of traditional Sufi and Gnawa singers; in the techniques of expert craftsmen; in the ingredients of its cuisine`` said SETH SHERWOOD. Equally important, most of what is modern both in artifact and organization can be found in this modern region of the city of Fez. In addition to this, the economic development is, perhaps, the most compelling aspect in the sense that Fez was flourishing and successful especially with European countries. ``Thus there were a dozen of Fassi agents in Manchester purchasing and shipping out cotton; another Fassi was in Genoa purchasing silk goods; still another established a commission house in Marseilles employing French agents said Horace Miner`` my understanding of all that was said during the lectures led me to say that Fes is not only a city one can wish to go and see but reading a history that is deeply rooted in our history and what more can I say than have some curiosity? If there is anything to learn at this moment, it is that UNESCO rightfully made the entire medina a heritage site. Ismail khejjou

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