Along the north-west coast of Africa lies the region of Maghreb, an area dominated by Arabs since the 8th century. Today, Maghreb consists of Morocco, Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, and Mauritania. The majority of the population living in the Maghreb region consider themselves Arab, but there are also a large number of non-Arabs, such as the Berbers, who call Maghreb their home.
Language and Culture in the Maghreb
The language of the Maghreb region is primarily Arabic. To aid in business and commerce, some countries also speak French, Italian and English. Religion is overwhelmingly Muslim, with only the slightest percentage being those of Christian and Jewish faith. The political systems of the countries are similar. Algeria, Mauritania and Tunisia all have presidents, while Morocco has a king. Libya has no formal title for its leader.
Food in the Maghreb
The countries of the Maghreb region share similar culinary delicacies, yet each country retains its own unique taste and style. Couscous is a popular and traditional dish of the region, as are tagines. Because of the geography of the region Maghreb has been, throughout history, closely associated with the Mediterranean world. Spices and flavors from Italy and Spain have filtered into Maghreb cuisine, pairing with the vegetables, meats and seafood native to the coastline region.