Narratives of Otherness in Contemporary Urban
Development Policy
The Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme in Morocco
Stephani...
Pettit 2
Abstract
This paper draws on Edward Said’s concept of representing the Other and Franz
Fanon’s spatial logic of c...
Pettit 3
Introduction
In mid May of 2003, twelve men exploded themselves in targeted suicide bombings
across the Moroccan ...
Pettit 4
to eradicate slums while providing no alternatives, cutting back social services, and failing
to manage inflation...
Pettit 5
relied on this event in order to make a case for its existence. The location of “terror” in the
slums effectively...
Pettit 6
economic and political issues concentrated within the spatial density of slums, they are
treated as the “antithes...
Pettit 7
Slums as value-based difference
Aside from construing slums as a socioeconomic issue like development policy
tend...
Pettit 8
planning were infused with meanings about the people who inhabited them or were
allowed to inhabit them, which is...
Pettit 9
Under colonialism there was no questioning of the objective logic of the colonizer.
The body of power that Europe...
Pettit 10
approaches is certainly one way of executing this call for an expansion of the analytical
framework articulated ...
Pettit 11
Said notes, earlier Orientalist writers such as Flaubert put forward their travels in the
“Orient” as voyages in...
Pettit 12
protectorate through multiple approaches to managing cities and applying modernism, as
well as for teasing out r...
Pettit 13
coerciveness relies more on a psycho-social element that binds people to assumptions of
superiority engrained by...
Pettit 14
that the land was not significant to the Moroccans because it was outside of the walls of
the medina, when it ha...
Pettit 15
I focus here more specifically on the insistence of state and non-state actors on
participation as it pertains t...
Pettit 16
nonetheless treated urban spaces as workshops for modernist ideas. The modern city was
constructed in such a way...
Pettit 17
under a narrative of “preservation”. This duality of tradition/modernism served tourism
and investment in urban ...
Pettit 18
Figure 1, French postcard of Casablanca reading
“indigenous agglomeration” (Wright 1991)
In contrast, the next p...
Pettit 19
“Moroccan lifestyle” (Rabinow in Al-Sayyad 1992). Emphasis was more so placed on
quantitative demands for housin...
Pettit 20
Figure 3, close up of housing design in Carriére Centrale in Casablanca
Neoliberalism and VSBP actors
Examining ...
Pettit 21
phenomena to explain their occurrence, problems, and solutions. Truth claims are
informed by the cultural, polit...
Pettit 22
liberating individual entrepreneurial freedoms and skills within an institutional
framework characterized by str...
Pettit 23
incitement to integration into this framework via facilitating faculties (microcredit/loans,
free trade partners...
Pettit 24
USAID, the European Investment Bank, the French Development Agency, and the World
Bank (Bogaert 2013). Its three...
Pettit 25
and claiming to train its attention on both the social and technical aspects of slum
upgrading and relocation, i...
Pettit 26
noted in a 2008 report by USAID on the progress of the VSBP, no one in the lowest income
bracket in Morocco coul...
Pettit 27
economic restructuring that led to massive riots in Casablanca and across the country).
However, to what degree ...
Pettit 28
Othering is about representation of another group in relation to the speaker. In this case,
approaching the repr...
Pettit 29
Discours Royal and Imagining Opponents to Modernity
With a framework of coloniality in mind, I will use narrativ...
Pettit 30
of modernity, of rationality, to hard work, to human rights, to moderation and to
tolerance” (Discours royal, Ma...
Pettit 31
In a 2006 speech made at a national meeting of local economic collectives, King
Mohammed VI , had this to say ab...
Pettit 32
in Casablanca which led to the autoconstruction of a shantytown and other makeshift
housing along the periphery ...
Pettit 33
Figure 4, Resettlement housing several kilometers outside of Casablanca (UN Habitat 2012)
Figure 5, Aerial photo...
Pettit 34
In a section titled “Sustained behavioral change”, Al Omrane explains that
ownership not only allows bidonvilloi...
Pettit 35
Figure 6, Chart grouping policy narratives about VSBP actors and slum dweller
These narratives are not unfamilia...
Pettit 36
who holds a very captive audience and is considered a figure of “high trust” for developing
and maintaining trus...
Pettit 37
potential subject of neoliberalism, if they are not only given the proper tools but the
socialization as well in...
Pettit 38
displaced run contrary to this notion. Not possessing the capacity required to compose
this full citizen, the in...
Pettit 39
powerful forces of a global neoliberal order. Is community driven, anti-capitalist
development possible, and wou...
Pettit 40
As we have seen during the protectorate, both Lyautey and Ecochard acted with
intentions to retain difference wh...
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Works Cited
Abu-Lughod, Janet L. Rabat, Urban Apartheid in Morocco. Princeton, NJ: Princeton
UP, 1980. Print.
Al...
Pettit 42
Fanon, Frantz, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Constance Farrington. The Wretched of the Earth. New
York: Grove, 1965. Pri...
Pettit 43
Kingdom of Morocco Poverty and Social Impact Analysis of the National Slum Upgrading
Program: Final Report. Rep....
Pettit 44
Wright, Gwendolyn. The Politics of Design in French Colonial Urbanism. University of Chicago
Press, 1991. Print....
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Narratives of Otherness in Contemporary Urban Development Policy-Villes Sans Bidonvilles in Morocco

Published on: Mar 3, 2016
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Transcripts - Narratives of Otherness in Contemporary Urban Development Policy-Villes Sans Bidonvilles in Morocco

  • 1. Narratives of Otherness in Contemporary Urban Development Policy The Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme in Morocco Stephanie Pettit University Honors, Spring 2015 Capstone Advisor: Dr. Randolph Persaud School of International Service
  • 2. Pettit 2 Abstract This paper draws on Edward Said’s concept of representing the Other and Franz Fanon’s spatial logic of colonialism to argue that the contemporary policy narratives informing the Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme in Morocco demonstrate a re-Othering of the population of the spatially peripheral bidonville. The VSBP, an ambitious shantytown upgrading and eradication project, was instituted in 2004 in an effort of the Moroccan state to address more intensely the problem of informal, inadequate housing in and on the periphery of Moroccan cities after the 2003 suicide bombings in Casablanca perpetrated by men raised in the Sidi Moumen bidonville. While early French administrators such as General Louis Hubert Lyautey and Henri Prost did not move to eradicate or integrate the growing bidonvilles of Casablanca and Rabat, rather ignoring or preserving them, later planners such as Michel Ecochard emphasized the resettlement of bidonville residents into “modern”-style housing projects, logical quarters good for housing large amounts of presumed workers at a low cost. Reflective of the logic of this Ecochard trame, the VSBP signals a neoliberal shift towards rapid eradication and relocation of bidonville residents. Examining the narratives that inform and justify policy prescriptions of the VSBP, this paper cites recurring themes and stories told about the Other (the native or the bidonvillois) that imply a continuation of negative attitudes and actions towards marginalized groups. It also demonstrates a return to the logic of Othering bidonville residents as outliers if not dangers to modern Moroccan urbanism and way of life, people who must be socialized and coaxed into the legal urban fabric and therefore the civilized way of life.
  • 3. Pettit 3 Introduction In mid May of 2003, twelve men exploded themselves in targeted suicide bombings across the Moroccan industrial city of Casablanca. The targets included a Spanish-owned restaurant, a five-star hotel, a Jewish cemetery and community center, an Italian restaurant, and the Belgian consulate, most of them symbols of Western influence and perceived socioeconomic privilege. Lauded mostly by Western states and organizations for its “model Muslim” status in the region in terms of calm and order, Morocco was rocked by this event, which stood in stark and horrific contrast to its supposed peaceful prestige. The attacks were deemed to be faith based, attributed to al-Qaeda in the Maghreb, and were denounced widely by leaders of Middle East and North African and Western leaders alike, especially faith leaders. It was quickly revealed that the suicide bombers were born and raised in the Sidi Moumen bidonville, or shantytown (literally “tin city”), on the outskirts of Casablanca. In this paper, I argue that this event triggered the appropriation of a global policy on slums to the level of Moroccan state governance, accompanied by narratives that drew on characterizing the actors and spaces of this event as outliers of the modern state. The bidonville, an informal settlements that began to form within and on the periphery of Moroccan cities during the French protectorate in the early 20th century, had long been a site of poverty, corruption, lack of services, and violence, a consistent social and legal issue concerning the state for decades. The Sidi Moumen bidonville in particular was one of the poorest shantytowns in Casablanca at the time of the bombings, and also one of the oldest. It had managed to withstand rounds of slum clearance by the state for decades, including neoliberal structural adjustment of the 1980s in which the state moved
  • 4. Pettit 4 to eradicate slums while providing no alternatives, cutting back social services, and failing to manage inflation that led to food riots. In addition to being an enduring site of the uncapability of French and Moroccan urbanism to effectively manage urban space, Sidi Moumen immediately became known as a “Terror Slum”, a bloody smudge on the Moroccan state’s increasingly commended international image (Mass Housing Competition Report 2014). Over a decade later, Sidi Moumen still exists, but some noticeable alterations have been made. Sidi Moumen is now the site of major government housing tracts and has its own tramline stop, which connects it to the administrative and financial districts of the city (Mass Housing Competition Report 2014). The issue of housing has been partially addressed, but access to employment and mobility rely on the tramline’s connection to preexisting economic centers. The bridge between 2003 and now is the Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme, or Cities Without Slums Program, an ambitious, nationwide shantytown upgrading and clearance project implemented by the Government of Morocco (GOM) in 2004. The program is part of a larger trend in international development, that of slum upgrading and relocation. The original blueprint for the program was developed in partnership between UN Habitat and the Cities Alliance in 1999, a global design for addressing the enduring problem of slums and the multitude of issues to development they posed. It is crucial to view the Moroccan program, however, in light of the bombings in Casablanca and in the wider scope of international politics in order to understand its timeliness and how it is justified in it execution. The discourse surrounding the bombings by the state and the resulting policy prescriptions for taking new approaches to slums
  • 5. Pettit 5 relied on this event in order to make a case for its existence. The location of “terror” in the slums effectively elevated previous notions of the violence present within slums but not extending beyond them into the “formal” industrialized city. The discourse on poverty often draws parallels with the irrationality and cultural difference that is often ascribed to violent extremism (Fanon 1965). Under neoliberal global governance, poverty shifts from being a collective issue towards becoming an individualized characteristic that denies the historicity of oppressive systems that produce and reproduce class structures. Poverty acts as an affront to the rest of the modern, developed and middle- and upper-class formal city because of its unwillingness to conform. These two elements, the threat of violence from the Other and the polarized representation of poverty under neoliberalism, are not unfamiliar to the historical growth of the bidonville in Morocco. Instead, I argue that they inform contemporary Moroccan and international development policy narratives about the bidonville. Slums, the Last Holdout to “Modernity” The pervasiveness of slums globally has been inscribed and revisited constantly within international development practice and theory. While the term “slum” is rooted in colonial urban planning (as well as the French bidonville), it remains the dominant term used to describe these informal settlements. Criteria vary but most definitions include high rates of poverty, lack of service provision, and illiteracy, lack of formal employment, and low levels of education (Huchzermeyer 3). The Millennium Development Goals (MDG) use of the term is its most formal inclusion into development language, established by the United Nations at the beginning of the 21st century and have informed country and local level governments’ approaches to dealing with slums. Because of the multiplicity of social,
  • 6. Pettit 6 economic and political issues concentrated within the spatial density of slums, they are treated as the “antithesis of conditions aspired to under modernism” and were considered an insurmountable challenge to the modernist colonial project in the 20th century as well (Huchzermeyer 2). “Cities Without Slums” originated in development lexicon as the slogan of Cities Alliance, a partnership between the World Bank and the UN Habitat center, in 1999. It has since been appropriated by the UN as the slogan of Goal Seven Target 11, which focused on addressing slums, and has trickled down to country-level policies as well. While methods of addressing slums have shifted away from pure eradication, which was predominant tactic of the 1970s and 80s, towards participatory rehousing and upgrading, the general norm of slums as visible difference from the modern city which should be removed remains obvious in the constant reinscription of insistence upon eradication present in development literature. Some scholars argue that present attempts to fully dispel slums from cities globally serves the purpose of fostering attractive development, making the city more competitive with other cities (Huchzermeyer 4), while others emphasize the financialization of the poor as a way for the state and multinational urban development companies to capitalize on “untapped markets” (Gruffydd Jones 2012, Bogaert 2013). Whether performed through integration into financial markets through microcredit, physically relocating slums in mass amounts, or creating access of slum dwellers to economically booming regions within the city, the end goal of the policy “Cities Without Slums” is clear: to have cities without slums via homogenization of the urban space.
  • 7. Pettit 7 Slums as value-based difference Aside from construing slums as a socioeconomic issue like development policy tends to do, slum adjustment policies more subtly mark slums as fostering value-based difference from the rest of the “formal” city. As previously mentioned, slums present a challenge to many values of modernity under which the formal contemporary city was constructed (Huchzermeyer, forthcoming; Bogaert 2013; Bogaert 2010), values such as land ownership, accumulation of credit/having “good credit”, established order and specializing neighborhoods. As surplus capital accumulates in cities, space claimed by shantytown dwellers contests the priorities of where the money is channeled. Luxury developments pop up alongside shantytowns across the world (Bogaert 2013, Chandhoke 1993), and a particular incompatibility of the two remains incredibly visual, in their claims to space, to the city’s resources, and to economy. While unlawfully residing on public land and engaging in the informal economy are not by themselves negative things, shantytown dwellers are still more heavily policed and addressed by government because of their outlier status. Shantytowns, in theory, oppose the idealization of steady work to maintain “legal” housing by being both spaces of informal or mixed involvement with the city’s economy and being constructed on public land (Chandhoke 1993). This last claim is particularly pertinent to contemporary development work to formally integrate into rather than eradicate slum dwellers from the urban fabric, relying on capitalist values of ownership and official employment to mold former slum dwellers into properly “socialized” citizens. The notion of social difference, manifested through housing constructs, reflects a colonial opinion that building and
  • 8. Pettit 8 planning were infused with meanings about the people who inhabited them or were allowed to inhabit them, which is discussed in the following section. Postcolonial theory: Colonial history and reinscribing the Other Certain strands of postcolonial theory emphasize the legacy of colonialism not only shaping the world but also continuing to reproduce colonial apparatuses and ideologies even after formal, direct colonialism of the West over the non-West has ended. Annibal Quijano and other scholars center this historicity of colonialism and Western domination within their work, insisting on viewing present phenomena controlled not only by Western actors but also former non-West colonies through this lens as well. The insistence tracing on a lineage of Western domination and reinforcement of political, economic, and social norms over time is distinctly postcolonial and postmodern. It rejects the ahistorical claims made by the European modernisms that served as vehicles for imperialism, instead contextualizing the repackaging of colonial enterprise in modern day social stratification, globalization, and governance. Quijano’s theory of coloniality acts as a segue between colonialism and the contemporary era of globalization, emphasizing the proliferation of certain ideologies and practices reminiscent of colonialism. His main point is that “superiority” was produced by colonizers from the West, imposed onto non-West peoples, and over time the power became desirable to the dominated (Quijano 169). Quijano argues that the central component of coloniality was the racial-social classification established by the colonizers to justify their domination. Overarching Eurocentrism, which elevated the ideology, cultures, languages, economics, and social structures of European society over that of the colonized further stratified these classifications.
  • 9. Pettit 9 Under colonialism there was no questioning of the objective logic of the colonizer. The body of power that Europeans constructed and maintained was considered a “paradigm of rational knowledge”, a “totality” that remains effective 1to this day (Quijano 177). This paradigm included dominion over “science”, especially when it came to society, that boiled down difference to nature and the need for the rational European to extend the knowledge and practice they had acquired to those who were not naturally inclined to modernism and progress as the European was. Simple difference was draped in intractability, turning discomfort into hostilities. Poignantly, Quijano points out that colonial power was at first kept at a distance from the “native”, but that over time colonial power subsumed native elites into its project by making power available and “desirable”. This critique trickles into later Marxist thinkers like Chaube, who delineates between the bourgeois of the West and the bourgeois (“elite”) of the former colonies, arguing that the latter is complicit in the project of hegemonic modernity that relies on neoliberal institutions and programs to maintain power in their own non-West countries (Chaube 2001). Ultimately, Quijano proposes decoloniality as the antithetical resistance to coloniality. Social totality, he says, can only be countered by a refocusing of the lens of history onto heterogeneity of existence and experience, calling first for an epistemological decolonization away from simplistic Eurocentric understandings of the world to include diversity and alternative takes on world history and governance. Viewing a particular space and population that does not “conform” to the project of modernity through a lens which challenges the largely unquestioned motives of contemporary development
  • 10. Pettit 10 approaches is certainly one way of executing this call for an expansion of the analytical framework articulated this paper. The “Other” is a foundational concept of postcolonialism that has been repeated in subaltern studies, feminist, queer and disability studies alike. Edward Said’s Other is constructed as dialectical opposite by the West, which must exist in order for the West to define itself. But Orientalism dictates a certain dynamic of power as well, where the West controls its vision of and maintains while the Middle East is subordinated. Said focuses on the genealogy of Orientalist discourse which stemmed from Europe and came to signify both ideological and structural power over the course of several centuries. He relies primarily on a textual reading of disputations by Western travelers, writers, and public figures on the Middle East and North Africa to establish his concept of the Other. A clear teleology is presented within Orientalism, where the “West” is set in motion far ahead towards modernity while the Orient is backwards looking, in need of assistance in effectively “catching up” with the progress of the West. When Said approaches formal colonialism during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, he notes a shift in the discourse towards facilitating such progress for the Orient by the West, a moral prerogative of Western civilization to extend its knowledge and innovation to the “masses” who do necessarily not possess the capacity to achieve these things on their own. Orientalism is grounded in the politics of representation, which Said decidedly says cannot be unbiased, in this case because the representation is performed on the premise of presupposing European/modernsuperiority. In this sense, Orientalism functions by the repetition of certain signifiers of the Other over time as a tool for self-definition and reflection more so than a mere characterization of another group of people. Indeed, as
  • 11. Pettit 11 Said notes, earlier Orientalist writers such as Flaubert put forward their travels in the “Orient” as voyages into the “mystic”, “dream-like” land meant to aid them in understanding their own Western sensibilities, moralities, and difference. Western superiority was constructed gradually through these Orientalists, translated into institutional knowledge and enacted through formal colonialism in the 19th and 20th centuries. A locus of knowledge was ultimately concentrated and maintained within Western institutions such as universities and backed by authoritative power in Western governments which, justified by their own logic, were able to establish colonial enterprise based on a premise of bringing the Other up to the “present day”, to the modernity that the West had achieved. Othering is also a spatial operation, though the geo-politics of the contemporary world order relies on a Eurocentric interpretation of the world map. Orientalist discourse localizes Otherness in the contemporary Middle East, familiar to the point where it becomes relatively simple to justify violence or interventionism in the region with quick references to “Islamic terrorism”, “that part of the world”, “lack of democracy”, “fanaticism”, and other one-liners enforced by repetition and pervasiveness. The logic of colonialism relied on geographical location and attributes afforded to regional inhabitants based off of physical distance from the West. As Frantz Fanon argues, one tenant of establishing legitimacy for empire was the enforcement of a violent, structural delineation between colonizer and colonized. The colonial city was a microcosm of a global picture of the value system of colonialism; a manifestation of and in some cases an experiment in expressing the new order through planning. This approach to discourse analysis will be particularly useful as a framework for the purposeful Othering of Moroccans by the French
  • 12. Pettit 12 protectorate through multiple approaches to managing cities and applying modernism, as well as for teasing out remnants of such an Othering discourse in contemporary state and development discourse as policy focuses on the bidonville over the medina. As Fanon argues, the city was a visible representation of the dichotomous and hierarchal logic of the colonizer, which operated in terms of binaries of good/evil, civilized/savage, clean/dirty, light/dark, etc, to describe the “native” quarters versus the newer European quarters, informing varying approaches to colonial urban planning all the while. Fanon bases his critiques on the racial dimension of colonialism, constructed and maintained by the colonizer through discourse but also coercive force, violence, threat and policing. Separation of the populace based on these hierarchies is important, but equally important are the tense and hostile interactions that build between the European and the Other. Fanon focuses on the potential for resistance, for decolonization, and how the spatial layout of colonialism would have to shift dramatically, indeed be overturned entirely in order to create an equal shift in social, political and economic structures of the oppressor. This effort would not be on the part of the individual, as Western thinking would have one believe, but would become possible due to the abolition of individualism, a capitalist notion, arguing it would be “the first to disappear” (Fanon 38). Thus, Fanon uses the spatiality of colonialism as a crux of the Western colonial project. He himself says “to break up the colonial world does not mean that after the frontiers have been abolished lines of communication will be set up between two worlds” (Fanon 33). Perhaps what Fanon is implying is that while colonialism was a spatial enterprise, its underlying
  • 13. Pettit 13 coerciveness relies more on a psycho-social element that binds people to assumptions of superiority engrained by colonialism. This paper seeks to synthesize these three critical theorists into a theory of the reappropriation of colonial Othering utilized by contemporary international actors at the helm of a repackaged project of modernity. Quijano’s theory on the postcolonial reappropriation of the modernity/rationality paradigm is valuable and remains unquenched in its project to interpellate everyone into its universalizing aim. Accompanying this is a discourse that geographically locates sources of social ills, economic disinvestment, and fear-fear of violence, fear of revolt, fear of difference, fear of intractability. While there is a large body of literature about the French protectorate’s approach to the preservation and management of “tradition” in regards to the medina, there is substantially less work done on the continued spatial and linguistic Othering of the bidonville as an outlier to Moroccan modernism. To situate this reappropriation of colonial thinking about the Other, it is necessary to turn to a brief review of the history of urban planning in Morocco under the French protectorate, its designers and its architects. Land Ownership and the Right to the City A quick note should be made about the use of land as it relates to the ideological manipulation of otherwise non-commodity resources. Land ownership became a central component of the French regime in Morocco, especially as more people flocked to the cities and the French continued to build outwards from the overfilled medinas (Abu- Lughod 1980). Not unlike contemporary attempts of the state and multinational construction corporations to corral and utilize land for private investment, land outside of the medina under the protectorate was also highly contested. Urban planners assumed
  • 14. Pettit 14 that the land was not significant to the Moroccans because it was outside of the walls of the medina, when it had actually been used for communal purposes. Planners noted this land as not only devoid of physical buildings or planning but also that it was “ideologically empty”, an untapped resource from which to expand the modernist project (Abu-Lughod 1980). Land, and what is done with it, is subject to the ideologies and meanings that humans ascribe to it. Henri Lefebvre’s concept of the right to the city as an egalitarian notion of access, engagement, and decision-making underlies the contestation of land on which colonial cities were established and how they still stand today. Scholars such as Mark Purcell trace the genealogy of the “inhabitant”-subject of the city back from colonial structures to the present day (Purcell 2002). The shifts and consistencies of who constitutes an “inhabitant” initially relied on differentiated function within the city but have shifted also towards a discourse of nationality and who constitutes a “legitimate” citizen in order to also be a real inhabitant. The notion that the constitution of an “inhabitant” in Morocco is useful in assessing the bidonvillois’s role in the city that they are more or less attempting to be a part of. This relies on a certain idea of the city that defaults to a Western set of principles that dictated a city’s social and physical construction. Land usage (and Western economic principle would prescribe land ownership) is a central issue laden with meaning for the legitimacy of the bidonville’s claim to usage and access of the city, one that has increasingly been shifted first towards the state and now towards multinational development corporations (Purcell 2002, Bogaert 2013). The notion of “participation”, then, becomes a central tenant in the discussion of what constitutes the city and its inhabitants.
  • 15. Pettit 15 I focus here more specifically on the insistence of state and non-state actors on participation as it pertains to joining the formal land and housing markets but also participation in a new “lifestyle” that accompanies such a physical transition. What “right to the city” has been and is being proclaimed by those in power to define that right seems often to rely on top-down determination rather than determination coming from those spaces and peoples being contested. I argue that this trend carries from the protectorate’s insistence on knowing what is right for the Other into the present day by multinationals, NGOs, and the state. This is present in the narratives that inform and argue policy decisions that end up affecting marginalized (physically and socioeconomically) urban residents today. Urbanism and the French Modernity Project in Morocco Modernism was of the ideological orientation that its principles were advanced in time and space ahead of whatever its thinkers deemed to be the “old”. When the French protectorate began in Morocco in 1912, Résident-Général Hubert Lyautey began enacting these principles through city planning, utilizing Morocco’s land and its preexisting cities as components of a “laboratory” of modernism. This development was concentrated mostly in Rabat, the decided capital of the protectorate, and Casablanca, which would become the primary industrial city. Emphasizing a departure from planning methods used in French Algeria under Le Corbusier, including interventionism and altering the structural components of the medina, Lyautey built Rabat and Casablanca so that the modern city could gaze upon the old. Michel Ecochard, who followed Lyautey in the 1930s as the Général, interpreted his job to be more about finding middle ground between “tradition” and “modernity”, but
  • 16. Pettit 16 nonetheless treated urban spaces as workshops for modernist ideas. The modern city was constructed in such a way that facilitated the “modern” gaze upon the “old city”, emphasizing not only difference but also direct opposition. In the present day these “experiments” in Moroccan urban planning are recognized by international bodies such as UNESCO as “heritage cities”-of both tradition and an initial attempt at constructing the modern city. This recognition of Rabat as a “heritage city” is a marker of the foreign gaze that makes Moroccan cities marketable for international tourism due to its constructed “unique” dualities-able to balance its modern sensibilities with its preserved tradition. The two major approaches to French urban development in Morocco demonstrate the intertwining of spatial planning with systems of values and ideology. I will later argue that Moroccan urban space continues to the present day to be imbibed with meaning as it pertains to the principles of modernism-efficiency, specificity, pacification, consumption, and socialization-though shifting away from the medina as Other and instead refocusing on the bidonville. The first approach, Lyautey’s techno-cosmopolitanism, sought to preserve spaces of “tradition” and Moroccan-ness, predominantly the medina, while simultaneously developing a ville nouvelle informed by French modernism expanding outwards from the walls of the medina. Lyautey believed in the idea of patrimoine in his planning, or the preservation of what he perceived to be a Moroccan “heritage” represented by the medina (Walter and Minca 2014). His equal dedication to association, relation by difference, inspired the dichotomous city he was to build, based on the principles of “culturally appropriate housing” that emphasized social hierarchy. The new city was an experiment for city planners to exercise Eurocentric ideals of modernism (specialization of sectors, service provision, monitoring) all while enclosing the medina
  • 17. Pettit 17 under a narrative of “preservation”. This duality of tradition/modernism served tourism and investment in urban development greatly during and after the protectorate. Nevertheless, Lyautey and his team did not account effectively for the mass migrations that would take place as major cities were constructed and became loci of industrialization, administration, and labor. Bidonvilles were essentially self-made neighborhoods built by rural migrants who became the urban poor and working class. The growing numbers of people constructing and living in the bidonvilles forced the Général to reevaluate his initial designs, especially based on increasing concerns over potential for uprising via the uncertain masses of people gathering along the formal city’s periphery. At first ascribing bidonvilles to his principles of patrimoine and association, Lyautey valorized bidonvilles at first as reflections of “naturally-occuring” Moroccan style housing (Goodman 2010). Still desiring to incorporate Moroccans into the formal urban fabric with this in mind, Lyautey and his architects Prost and Laprade worked to provide a “new” medina filled with a reenvisioning of the way the preexisting medina was set up, but with some values of modernism such as production, order, and hygiene in mind as well. The Quartier Habous, one of the most famous versions of these new medinas in Casablanca, remains today as a major tourist attraction to the city, described in travel books as “Moroccan-lite” and “toy-town” with “neat little rows of shops and houses” (Lonely Planet Guidebook- Morocco).
  • 18. Pettit 18 Figure 1, French postcard of Casablanca reading “indigenous agglomeration” (Wright 1991) In contrast, the next phase, Ecochard’s “middling modernism”, responded to the perceived inadequacies of housing provision under Lyautey within a new schema: modern public housing tracts. During Ecochard’s term, bidonvilles continued to spring up along the outskirts of the medina and the ville nouvelle as cities were rapidly developed into economic metropoles. However, Ecochard took a different approach to finding a solution to these unplanned developments that stood so starkly in contrast to the rationally laid out streets and civic centers of the new city. While still attempting to promote a hierarchy between native and colonizer, Ecochard’s approach demanded that universalism be physically manifested through his trame, rows and rows of homogenous housing structures designed specifically for the “Moroccan proletariat”-affording some degree of modernity to otherwise disenfranchised Moroccans. He also experimented in hybridizing “indigenous” housing with modernist planning in his tracts, calling for a “middling modernism” that socialized Moroccans to the introduction of modernism to their city while simultaneously keeping them contained and within housing that facilitated a
  • 19. Pettit 19 “Moroccan lifestyle” (Rabinow in Al-Sayyad 1992). Emphasis was more so placed on quantitative demands for housing over social differentiation. Yet this attempt struggled to keep up pace of production and was challenged and contested by the residents’ own touches and transformations to the cookie cutter houses they were forced into. The project only accomplished housing a minority of new arrivals to the major cities (Rabinow in Al-Sayyad 1992). While attempting to diffuse segregation and emphasize humanism, Ecochard has been criticized for fostering greater social separation because of the strange hybrid nature of the tracts he developed without addressing any social aspect other than his default European ideals. A living testament to Ecochard’s principles, Casablanca’s Carriére Centrale stands to this day, altered by its residents to best suit their own needs yet still underserviced and structurally unsound near the center of the city. Figure 2, Trame Ecochard aerial photograph, 1944
  • 20. Pettit 20 Figure 3, close up of housing design in Carriére Centrale in Casablanca Neoliberalism and VSBP actors Examining the narratives that inform and justify policy prescriptions of the Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme, or VSBP, I cite recurring themes and stories told about the Other (the native or the bidonvillois) that imply a continuation of negative attitudes and coercive actions towards marginalized groups. It also demonstrates a return to the logic of Othering bidonville residents as outliers if not dangers to modern Moroccan urbanism and way of life, people who must be socialized and coaxed into the legal urban fabric and therefore the civilized way of life. Government policy and law have gradually become the regulators of truth and power in a given society, described as bio-power by Foucault, starting in the West and I would argue transitioning into a global scale over the past half century due to colonialism, imperialism and globalized norms (Foucault 1977-78). Bio-power and resulting bio- politics emphasize state management with a focus on the future, especially in terms of securitization and integration of the population into nation-based truth claims for more effective management. “Truth”, now defaulted to the state, is a lens that filters events and
  • 21. Pettit 21 phenomena to explain their occurrence, problems, and solutions. Truth claims are informed by the cultural, political, social and economic history of people and places, and are deployed through policy in order to demonstrate the lack of a suitable alternative. They are present, for Foucault, in the ways that the average person speaks, is understood and accepted as logical and rational within a society. But today they are most powerful when they are deployed by the state in ways intelligible to the vast majority of the message’s receivers, often made through illusions to or metaphors of a cohesive national body, religion, cultural values or historical reference. The state as the purveyor of truth and often the sole body powerful enough to act upon its claims can quite easily contest outlying opinions, groups, and actions as irrational and incoherent, though this does not make one policy hold truth just because it claims to do so (Roe 16). Narrative policy analysis intervenes in the midst of the controversial political decisions of the present day to examine proclaimed truths and how they are argued as truth. Revisiting Quijano’s modernity/rationality paradigm here is relevant to understanding truth claims in a postcolonial sense, because a perspective claiming “truth” inevitably argues that alternatives to such truth are illogical and invalid, even if that is not directly articulated. Presenting strategic narratives or specific readings of narratives are ways of insisting on certain truths, especially if they rely on collective memory, economic interest, or religious affiliation. Narratives of neoliberalism: participation, dignity, safety Neoliberalism stems from a history of Western interventionism and recent Western dominance as a political and economic hegemon. It distinctly ties in human well- being into its framework, proposing that “human well-being can best be advanced by
  • 22. Pettit 22 liberating individual entrepreneurial freedoms and skills within an institutional framework characterized by strong private property rights, free markets, and free trade” (Harvey 2007). Neoliberalism is not only typified by a set of economic policy prescriptions that rely on the intervening role of the state but also more colloquially as a discourse articulated through hegemonic power structures (political, economic, cultural, etc). It began being practiced through the reformation of the state in the 1970s with the neoliberal adjustment in Chile by the group of economists called the “Chicago boys”, who worked alongside the International Monetary Fund to restructure the Chilean government through the Pinochet regime. Neoliberalism became the common grounding in the 1980s onwards of the work of international governing bodies such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. Much of neoliberal theory relies on the role of the state as the enforcer of free market and free trade policy, feeding back into businesses and elite interests to foster the good of the whole. Through a postcolonial lens, neoliberalism relies on ensuring the well being of the state and investors, usually in the West or through Western institutions, at the expense of many under the assumption that what is good for the state and business is good for everyone. Scholars have noted that the repetition of such policy and its informing ideology led to its eventual assumed “common sense”, because of the relevant cultural and traditional values used to justify its pervasiveness and good sense. Neoliberalism, much like the logic of colonialism coming from the colonizer, creates the illusion of consensus through state coercion (Harvey 2007). “Participation”, a growing buzzword of neoliberalism, emphasizes compliance in a system whether on the part of a socialization into neoliberal practices (establishing credit, paying rent, belief in individualism, etc.) or due to
  • 23. Pettit 23 incitement to integration into this framework via facilitating faculties (microcredit/loans, free trade partnerships, etc.). Other such notions as “freedom”, “dignity”, “individuality”, and “entrepreneurship” are given such positive reception that it is very hard for a collective, let alone an individual, to identify and act on any disassociation from neoliberalism. The politico-economic elite (and here I will add both Western and colonial/postcolonial) that grew out of pre-neoliberalism and flourished as its subjects had its interests protected under the guise of not only market freedom but also fears of violence and uprising from those disenfranchised by the shift. In this section, a discussion of neoliberalism as discourse provides a way of reading invocations of certain values and policies informed by those values, which are introduced as totally logical with no alternative. These can help in tracing those same conversations of inevitability back to colonial discourse about modernity. Villes Sans Bidonvilles Actors, Coloniality and Policy Narratives As previously discussed, the Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme in Morocco signaled a shift in urban development policy towards direct management of slums through intervention. It responded to the 2003 Casablanca bombings, which localized terroristic violence in the formal city from within the slums, as well as attempted to corral people still outside of the framework of housing and economic legality into the rest of the city. It set out to eradicate slums in 85 towns and cities across the country, affecting millions of people, before the year 2020. The program was initially projected to cost about 25 billion dirhams (approx. 26 billion USD), with the state subsidizing about 10 billion dirhams (approx. 1 billion USD) of the total (UN Habitat 2012). The VSBP receives support through
  • 24. Pettit 24 USAID, the European Investment Bank, the French Development Agency, and the World Bank (Bogaert 2013). Its three central tenants are restructuration, relogement, and recasement, or upgrading, rehousing, and relocation (Rapport National 2012, Al Omrane 2010). The Government of Morocco (GOM), the UN Habitat, World Bank, and Cities Alliance all have roles in the execution of the VSBP in Morocco, its design originating from the Cities Alliance and the Millennium Development Goals at the turn of the 21st century. The most important aspects of the VSBP to understand in the context of neoliberal restructuring are the emphasis first on participation of the slum dweller and second, a public-private partnership between the state and private urban development corporations and conglomerates, facilitated by the backing of NGOs like the Cities Alliance. It utilizes public land to develop housing that “competes with insalubrious and informal housing” with the help of international development companies. It is funded in part by NGOs and the Solidarity Housing Fund of the GOM (UN Habitat 2012, Al Omrane 2010). Approximately 9,000 hectares of public land were “mobilized” by the state for the purposes of the VSBP between 2003 and 2009 alone (UN Habitat 2012). According to the UN, four years before the program began, approximately 24.2% of Moroccan living in urban areas resided in slums. Only a few years later in 2007 and three years after the VSBP was instituted, that percentage was reduced to approximately 13.1% of urban residents living in slums (UN Data, Slum population as percentage of urban population, 2000 and 2007). The VSBP occurs through a “redeployment of the state” (Bogaert 2013) after decades of focus on the eradication of slums rather than the “participation” of bidonvillois in their own relocation and upgrading. While insisting on difference from past programs
  • 25. Pettit 25 and claiming to train its attention on both the social and technical aspects of slum upgrading and relocation, in practice the social element is subsumed to “creating responsible citizens” (maîtrise d’ouvrage social, MOS) in the interest of managing a security state (Bogaert 2013, Huchzermeyer). Security concerns are centered through the required participation of slum dwellers in resettlement and resocialization. This is embodied in the component of accompagnement social or AS designed to accompany slum dwellers through the process of moving as well as the facilitation and guidance of slum dwellers toward accessing financial institutions, especially in the realm of micro-credit. This “resocialization” component is, in fact, contingent on neoliberal values of modernity, including market integration, competitiveness and private property. Developers often can’t keep up the pace of relocation over eradication, so slum dwellers must find temporary housing and also must rely on microfinance to pay for their new housing. Thus, the newer social aspect of the VSBP becomes an attractive bonus to the work of developers that helps them capitalize further on investment, especially as groups like Al Omrane, the largest commissioned firm working on the VSBP, opens its company to the stock market (Bogaert 2013). Additionally, the “participation” narrative of the VSBP is boiled down to an empty sort of participation in which the slum dweller does not approach the actors and have their own wishes facilitated, but instead the actors decide where, when and how people will be brought into the program. The self-constructed homes of the bidonvillois are sometimes destroyed before their new dwellings are constructed and they are able to move into the next phase of the program, leaving them to seek shelter elsewhere and/or take out loans to finance a forced move in the meantime (Bogaert 2011). However, as
  • 26. Pettit 26 noted in a 2008 report by USAID on the progress of the VSBP, no one in the lowest income bracket in Morocco could even afford to take out such a loan, making the time between the slum demolition and relogement a dangerous time for slum dwellers who often constitute the lowest income bracket (USAID Report on Housing Finance in Morocco, 2008). Relocation programs move slum dwellers away from their former communities and networks into “awarded” housing further out on the periphery of cities and even out in previously “undeveloped” quasi-rural spaces without connection to a pre-existing city, town, or village. Methodology: Narrative policy analysis Narrative policy analysis as a qualitative analytical tool seeks to identify and investigate the various stories about policy told by actors involved in a controversial topic. It then attempts to synthesize logics and overlaps in reasoning about the problems at hand connecting them to a proposed solution. It does not necessarily seek to homogenize narratives or find cohesiveness, instead choosing to rely on maintaining the “uncertainty, complexity, and polarization” it encountered in the policy issue when it first began to approach it, perhaps instead finding a new light to view the controversy within (Roe 17). The most useful aspect of narrative policy analysis for the purposes of this paper is the focus on identifying metanarratives and contesting policymakers’ and technical actors’ desire to present their policy narratives as new or wholly broken from the past. Understanding the dynamics of power and politics is central in this type of lens on policy narratives. The governing bodies sharing roles in the implementation of the VSBP all argue somewhere in their policy documents that the VSBP articulates a conscious shift away from old methods of slum management (eradication methods of the 1980s and 90s and
  • 27. Pettit 27 economic restructuring that led to massive riots in Casablanca and across the country). However, to what degree power relations stay the same despite changing terminology or methodology is contestable, and narrative policy analysis seeks to dig out the metanarratives rearticulated through updated policy. Additionally, this analysis will incorporate the concept of coloniality to better situate these recurring yet presented as new narratives within the framework of postcolonial theory, teasing out how the reasons for involvement in such a project are not simply neutral and rational but draw on both history and present day interests that incite each actor to participate. This approach has great salience in the case of the VSBP, especially with the amount of literature each individual actor has published on the background and role they play in the project. The Millennium Development Goals marked slums as a high priority item on the UN’s agenda for eradication, situating them as the ultimate outlier to global development and ending poverty. Additionally, the Moroccan government and the king have recognized in their words and actions the perceived urgency of addressing slums in Morocco. Finally, burgeoning international firms in the region such as Al Omrane, a conglomerate of urban development and planning corporations, bring the interests of their multiple sectors to the table as well. Public, private, and international norming bodies have their stakes in the Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme. Identifying the Other through absence: Assumptions as text One voice the reader may find missing from this collection of actors is that of the bidonvillois, those who actually live in the slums and are experiencing this type of slum policy. However, the purposes of the analysis are to focus on the actors who create and justify their own policies that are then given credence and implemented on a larger scale.
  • 28. Pettit 28 Othering is about representation of another group in relation to the speaker. In this case, approaching the representation of the problems and concerns of the bidonvillois by the multiple actors listed above, I chose to focus on the narratives of those directly informing and carrying out policy related to the bidonville, whose representations of the Other and the spaces they inhabit carry serious consequences for their livelihood. This does not seek to deny the agency and role that the bidonvillois have in their own lives under the VSBP project. Rather, this paper attempts to discover how the relocation of the Other into the bidonville in the contemporary discourse of development reinscribes a hierarchy of power that centers the knowledge and alleged wisdom of the institutional bodies that control the program. To the degree that Othering is about discussing difference without making direct comparisons, my analysis focuses not only on what is said about the Other, or the bidonvillois, but also on what is said about the conditions of modernity and development aspired to even in the absence of the Other. As Said has made an extensive case for, sometimes more is said about a place or group imagined as Other through describing only the dominant or oppositional group isolated from the other group. For example, as we will see later, if King Mohammed VI calls upon “faithful subjects” when discussing the Casablanca suicide bombings and the perpetrators, one can wonder what then qualifies as an “unfaithful subject”, or if that person would be considered a subject at all. This also locates them outside of the definition of a good citizen, relegating them to the socio- economic position of the bombers, who were also bidonvillois. Assumptions about what the Other is and is not through solely evoking language about the dominant framework can also be read as a text on the Other.
  • 29. Pettit 29 Discours Royal and Imagining Opponents to Modernity With a framework of coloniality in mind, I will use narrative policy analysis to draw out the varying aspects of narratives that inform the Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme in Morocco. I will examine on a 2010 description of the Moroccan Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme on the part of Al Omrane conglomerate, the collaborative UN Habitat, GOM, and World Bank text of the VSBP, as well as statements made by the King of Morocco in regards to the bidonvilles and the 2003 Casablanca bombings perpetrated by residents of Sidi Moumen. Each of them present justifying narratives rooted in collective history of the nation and of urban development, yet via differing approaches. At the end of May of 2003, King Mohammed VI of Morocco delivered a speech to the nation reflecting on the tragedy of the Casablanca bombings. He called upon the “fidéle sujets et citoyennes”, or faithful subjects and citizens, of the nation to collectively recognize the attacks as contrary to a the nation’s collective Islamic faith. He claimed that the Moroccan people had “come together as one person”, a “perfect cohesion between the many fringes of society”, to rally against the negative interpretation of their faith that he claimed the attacks were predicated upon (Discours royal, May 2003), asking that this collective body continue to uphold the “obligations and duties of citizenship” they were acting upon. It is important to note here that in this discours royal and elsewhere, the king refers to the Moroccan people by the informal, singular “tu” form, invoking a condition of unity and familiarity in his rhetoric. Later, he remarks that Morocco must uphold and act upon its “international commitments” to combat terrorism, emphasizing the necessity of an anti-terrorism strategy to “…educate, to form the citizen by instilling them with the virtues of openness,
  • 30. Pettit 30 of modernity, of rationality, to hard work, to human rights, to moderation and to tolerance” (Discours royal, May 2003). In closing, the King notes that Morocco’s struggle against “terrorism” will become part of a “global strategy, integrated and multidimensional”, which exists within the “effective framework of democracy and supremacy of the law” and relies on “putting energy into the service of development and solidarity” (Discours royal, May 2003). Excerpts of this speech are referenced in the narratives of NGOs working in urban development policy towards slums (UN Habitat 2012, Bogaert 2011). In another statement made a few years later, the king remarks specifically about the bidonvilles and the Moroccan state’s attempts to ameliorate the perceived problem. He traces the trajectory of the throne’s view of bidonvilles since a speech in 2001 in which he “sounded the alarm” about the proliferation of slums, “anarchic houses” making up “truly savage cities” that “constitute an affront to the dignity of the citizen” and a “menace to the cohesion of the social fabric” (Discours royal 2006). The king identifies the Moroccan city as “at risk”, via the proliferation of the bidonville, of no longer being a space of “social solidarity, economic production, urban development and openness to culture and civilization”, instead becoming a “gateway to exclusion, ostracism, or hate” (Discours royal 2006). He proposes a solution to the “ignorance” found in these oppositional spaces, fostered by “illiteracy and social isolation” and general “lack of intellectual stimulation”, which is to enstill young people (primary group of dissatisfied or disenfranchised people, also who perpetrated the Casablanca attacks) with “the virtues of patriotic engagement…through education into modernity that will allow them to add value to our civilizational heritage” (Discours royal 2006).
  • 31. Pettit 31 In a 2006 speech made at a national meeting of local economic collectives, King Mohammed VI , had this to say about the VSBP in relation to previous attempts to house the urban poor: “What we aim at, in fine, is not simply to have shanty-free cities, still less to set up soulless concrete slabs which thwart all forms of sociable living. We rather intend to evolve cities that are not solely conducive to smart, friendly, and dignified living, but also investment-friendly and productive spaces-urban areas, that is, which are attached to their specific character and to the originality of their style.” (Discours royal, December 2006) This section of the 2006 statement can also be found immediately preceding the preamble to a 2012 UN HUPC and UN Habitat report on the status of the VSBP nearly eight years after its initial implementation, as well as in the preamble to a French language version of a similar document produced by the GOM. The King has made statements elsewhere about the values of free trade, the inevitably of conforming to modernity, and openness to economic development such as initiating the Tangier-Mediterranean port as conducive to a “positive experience with globalization” (Discours Royal 2007). We will see this language of modernity and danger in opposition recurring within the VSBP policy documents themselves as well. International Governing Bodies and VSBP The UN’s 2012 report on the Cities without Slums project in Morocco, titled “Making Slums History”, begins its background on slums in the country with a history that situates their development in the 1920s, mostly in Casablanca. However, it makes no reference to the French protectorate at all, noting instead the setting up of a heating plant
  • 32. Pettit 32 in Casablanca which led to the autoconstruction of a shantytown and other makeshift housing along the periphery of the building. It traces the shifting of shantytown policy during the late 20th century from hands off to purely technical to incorporating social aspects into the program, such as “the participation of urban residents”. Urbanization and the economic development fueling it are not attributed to anything in this document, and intervention in slums is marked in six phases, all after the protectorate ended in 1952 (UN Habitat 2012). The narrative coming from the UN is that the VSBP includes new, essential social aspects as well as technical that allow participants in the program to voice their concerns and have them addressed by the governing bodies. However, what the document focuses on are the “successes” of the program in terms of amounts of slums cleared and relocated, with no mention of the contributions made by the social program to the execution of VSBP. Some notes are made on the socialization of former bidonvillois into their new houses, including that the number of persons “dwelling in the same unit [has decreased] from 6.3 to 5.5 persons, noting what may be not simply the ability of the program to provide enough housing for many people but may also point to an emphasis on reducing family size as is typical in urban spaces (UN Habitat 2012). In the realm of visual representation of the Other, pictures are provided of housing in addition to maps showing where slums have been cleared, yet the houses appear distanced from city centers and in rows of high rise, flat looking buildings. There are no pictures of people using their new homes, only pictures of people in what appears to be classroom-style rooms captioned by text stating that they are “social follow-through cells entrusted with the task of working closely with the population” (UN Habitat 2012).
  • 33. Pettit 33 Figure 4, Resettlement housing several kilometers outside of Casablanca (UN Habitat 2012) Figure 5, Aerial photos demonstrating completed slum eradication in Agadir (southern Morocco), no indication of where bidonvillois were relocated (UN Habitat) Third Party Private Firms and the VSBP Al Omrane is the primary private group of development partners representing the Ministry of Housing in the execution of the program’s moving parts. In their policy description of the VSBP, they describe themselves as a group that “intervenes within a global vision of human development and social integration” and it lists its major achievements in terms of the successes of the number of slums cleared (about 43% by 2010). Al Omrane’s goals and objectives include achieving the MDG Goal 7 Target 11, “ensuring social advancement” through the ability to consume and own-land and home titles, entering the credit market, “social inclusion” (undefined), and specifically “involving the private sector”.
  • 34. Pettit 34 In a section titled “Sustained behavioral change”, Al Omrane explains that ownership not only allows bidonvillois to have control over their own living conditions but also that it “includes a new social behavior as well as increased involvement in local affairs” (Al Omrane 2010). This “new social behavior” includes “responsibilization” of beneficiary households, focused on the “capacity building” of the poor through microfinance through the Guarantee Fund (FOGARIM). Town planning favors “social diversity” under the accompagnement social model of VSBP, but does not provide information as to how newly constructed housing will be not just for the former bidonvillois but also for other classes. Assessment: Representation and metanarratives in policy narratives From a careful reading of these texts, three major components of narratives about the bidonville and the bidonvillois arise. First, that the bidonville and its inhabitants pose a security threat, second, that the bidonville and bidonvillois are not integrated into the rest of society, and third, that their socialization differs from that of the urban resident. These themes are explored through observing how policy narratives compare the bidonvillois to the desired subject, explicitly and implicitly, by relying on assumptions about a superior ideology, expressed as neoliberalism and aligned discursively with colonialist concepts of the self and Other.
  • 35. Pettit 35 Figure 6, Chart grouping policy narratives about VSBP actors and slum dweller These narratives are not unfamiliar to the dichotomization of the poor from the “rest” of the residents of Morocco. First, these narratives all stem from the major actors who have a hand in carrying out the Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme in Morocco. Each actor has power over the people they are describing, and do not inhabit their spatial or socioeconomic location. Each actor is compelled by international norms of nationalized politics and economic integration set forth by norming bodies themselves (Huchermeyer, forthcoming). The power of such actors to speak about a group with little self- representation in these bodies is therefore great, especially through the words of the king, Security Refernce to Bidonvilles "Menace", "Savage/unruly", terrorism, indecent Reference to collective "faithful citizens", "at risk" "friendly" "dignified" *Assumptions about bidonville do not fully constitute citizens, not posessing dignity, embodiment of risk Integration Reference to Bidonvilles "anarchic", incohesive, "isolated" Reference to collective "Participation", Supremacy of the law, global strategy, "international commitments", "civilization", "add value", "productive", "investment friendly" *Assumptions about bidonville lawless, inwards- looking, unproductive, investment-thwarting, Socialization Reference to Bidonvilles "exploit democracy", "ignorant" Reference to collective "Obligations and duties", "rationality", "hard work", "moderation", "tolerance", "social solidarity/fabric", "evolve" *Assumptions about bidonville irrational, intolerant, outlier, static
  • 36. Pettit 36 who holds a very captive audience and is considered a figure of “high trust” for developing and maintaining trust with development actors (UN Habitat 2012, World Bank Report 2006). Second, the linguistic representation of slum dwellers, as one can see from these examples alone, is starkly polarizing, even if the methods of slum policy have shifted and language has been channeled through neoliberal filters instead of familiar colonial discourse. Said and Fanon both emphasize the spatial location of the Other as well as the ability for an actor in a discursively powerful position to amalgamate the Other into a teeming lumpenproletariat of sorts that takes little account of internal diversity but claims opposition, whether physical or ideological, to the actor doing the representation. None of the policy documents refer to the French protectorate’s urban modernism project as the starting point for the growth of bidonvilles in Moroccan cities or as having any role in interventionism in the bidonvilles. This signals an attempt at breaking from colonial reference for urban policy through erasure ofthe era entirely, but policy metanarratives about the informal city versus the formal city and their respective residents will tell another story. Reading neoliberal “dignity” and the outlying Other In the case of discussing the bidonville and its residents, the Other is articulated within both a narrative of desirability and of danger, similar to Orientalist rhetoric in that there is a tendency to project reflections of the self through fears and differences through representation of the Other. On one hand, the bidonvillois is constructed as isolated, on the “fringes” of society, and their non-integration is what leads them to potentially be weaponized against the state and the society. On the other, this makes them an untapped
  • 37. Pettit 37 potential subject of neoliberalism, if they are not only given the proper tools but the socialization as well into the accompanying ideology. This is not only monetarily profitable to the state, to development firms executing the VSBP, and to banks financing ownership, but also to the state as a source of security for state-determined beliefs and from further violent attacks. If the Other can be defined, it can be controlled. If the Other is anarchic and produces things that are “anarchic” in nature, it means they are opposed to order, to law and to the formal state apparatus that would otherwise regulate it and be able to control it. Ideology, in this case the ideology of neoliberalism, is a series of assumptions about the ideal way to interpret and function within the world (Althusser 1970). Interpellation of the object of the VSBP leads to the creation of neoliberal subjects: responsible citizens who contribute and produce, who abide by the law, who are open to modernity, and by so doing are afforded dignity. “Dignity”, in a neoliberal era, is constituted by the “capacity” (to use policy narrative language) to produce, to own, and to consume (Harvey 2007). Social cohesion then is predicated off of collective home ownership, access to credit and therefore consumption, and the formal economy including employment within private or public sectors instead of petty jobs or unemployment. This capacity is tied to notions of citizenship and the duty of upholding the nation- state through becoming a part of an allegedly already cohesive society (Purcell 2002). The right to the city is intimately connected to the way in which VSBP actors attempt to construe the policy as fostering such a capacity, which, under neoliberalism, is supposed to constitute that right. The implications of categorizing the Other as incapable of achieving full citizenship unless facilitated into the formal economy and being physically
  • 38. Pettit 38 displaced run contrary to this notion. Not possessing the capacity required to compose this full citizen, the inability to become the neoliberal subject ideologically constructs one as the Other in the case of the disenfranchised bidonvillois. Instead, the integrated “citizen” owes their livelihood to the state for being afforded the rights of a citizen (services, safety, social cohesion, etc.) and no longer constitutes a threat to the dominant socio-economic system and ideology perpetuated through institutions. This desire to interpellate is also present in Al Omrane’s inclusion of education for children in their development platform, encouraging youth to adopt ideas channeled through the Moroccan education system that will keep the student within the bounds of the dominant neoliberal ideology (Al Omrane 2010). Conclusions and implications Through narrative policy analysis, this paper has sought to identify stories and representations of a specific group by policy actors, which are then used to justify state action towards the group. Extreme poverty, isolation, and disenfranchisements are huge controversies of the contemporary era, but this paper has sought to intervene in the midst of such controversy to point to alternative readings of the solutions proposed to such issues. Metanarratives, stories told about the self and the Other since colonialism, have been identified as perpetuating “us and them” characterizations that have the potential to allow if not encourage intervention predicated on the basis of extending modernity and rationality to the Other. Systemic poverty is still a problem created and fostered by global capitalism, building off of colonial enterprise. This paper incites further questions about what a truly participatory program looks like, if it would be able to resist or circumvent existing the
  • 39. Pettit 39 powerful forces of a global neoliberal order. Is community driven, anti-capitalist development possible, and would it necessarily function outside the demands to rely on the nation for its fruition? It also raises questions about the monetary benefits the state reaps from integrating the urban poor into the city, for the benefit of the state tourism industry (Morocco’s most profitable) or for the pockets and votes of politicians. Moreover, it might be useful to read outlying narratives about the bidonville that recount the Casablanca bombings in a light which seeks to understand the full picture of existence in the bidonville rather than being reductive and focusing solely on how to incorporate it into the preexisting urban space. One example of this is the novel Les Étoiles de Sidi Moumen by Mahi Binebine, which traces the lifespan of the boys who grew up in Sidi Moumen who later became the Casablanca suicide bombers in 2003. Binebine develops a fictitious yet captivating perspective on lived experience and tight-knit community in the slums of Casablanca. The suicide bombings targeting sites of foreign investment and wealth in Casablanca’s ville nouvelle informed the VSBP’s speedy implementation. The association of acts of violence, categorized as irrational affronts on civilization, with a vulnerable, self- constructed location on the periphery of a city and the availability of discourse about a violent, brooding Other are both apparent in the policy narratives that feed into the VSBP. In this light, bio-power, manifested in the securitization of the formal city, arises as a major motivation for the VSBP’s implementation. Acts of violence against the city, the location of major investment flows, labor, and globalized interactions constitute a threat not only to the physical safety of the populace but the insured continuation of investment, proliferation of modernity as ideology, and the stable nation-state as well.
  • 40. Pettit 40 As we have seen during the protectorate, both Lyautey and Ecochard acted with intentions to retain difference while promoting urban development at the beginning of the modernity project in Morocco. While Lyautey moved to construct “culturally appropriate” housing and even romanticized the bidonville, Ecochard’s work to “middle” the urban poor between modernity and ignorance by constructing mass housing projects to shelter the masses. Ecochard never envisioned the protectorate ending, proposing that this style of housing would be conducive to the “lifestyle” of the Other while still maintaining distance from the location of modernity and mobility in the ville nouvelle. Though this project was never completed, the Villes Sans Bidonvilles Programme echoes its sentiments, attempting to incorporate the undignified poor into preexisting financial and social systems in order to mitigate risk and create more profitable subjects.
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