The National Library of Morocco in Rabat (BNRM) houses the major literary archives of the late Algerian scholar and thinker Mohammed Arkoun. The wife of scholar Touria Yacoubi Arkoun moved her literary library from Paris to Morocco, which includes 5,000 books and 7,000 journals in various fields of literature and science.
The director of BNRM, Mohamed El Farran, and Touria Yacoubi Arkoun signed the donation agreement this week at BNRM. The signing ceremony was marked by the presence of the Moroccan Minister of Islamic Affairs Ahmed Toufiq Ahmed Taoufiq, the Minister of Youth, Culture and Communication, Mohamed Mehdi Bensaid, and the President of the Moroccan Community Council Overseas (CCME), Dris El Yazami.
In his speech at the ceremony, El Farran pointed out that Touria Yacoubi Arkoun had long wanted her late husband’s library to be placed within the historic walls of the National Library of Morocco but was met with many difficulties in implementation. El Farran added that despite the difficulties and long journey, she persisted in achieving her goal of immortality and passing on the literary legacy of Mohamad Arkoun to future generations.
For her part, Touria Yacoubi Arkoun emphasized the love her late husband, Mohamed Arkoun, had for Morocco. Highlighting the library’s literary significance to human culture, El Farran said BNRM is “proud of this gift” that will enlighten the mind of one of the finest scholars in the Islamic world. Born in 1928 in Algeria, Arkoun was an influential Islamic scholar; he is considered by many to be “one of the most original scholars in the field of Islamic studies”.
The scholar’s academic career spanned more than 30 years, during which time he advocated Islamic modernism, secularism, and humanism. Arkoun is the author of numerous works in French, English, and Arabic, including “Rethinking Islam”, “Immigration: Challenges and Wealth” and “The Unthinkable in Thoughts” contemporary Islamic thought”.
Arkoun has won the seventeenth Giorgio Levi Della Vida i Prize for his lifetime contributions to the field of Islamic studies. He retired in 1995 and moved to Casablanca, the hometown of his Moroccan wife, whom he married in 1990 after his divorce from his first wife. The scientist died on September 14, 2010, and was buried in Casablanca.