- noun marihuana or hashish. The word, pronounced ‘keef’, is North African Arabic slang for the cannabis (usually in herbal form) smoked there. More specifically, kif may designate refined powdered hemp plants mixed with powdered tobacco or, as in the Berber stories of Mohammed Mrabet, may refer to uncleaned grass. The word’s literal meaning is ‘pleasure’. Many British drug users of the late 1950s and 1960s had their formative experiences of cannabis in Morocco.