Dr. Ahmad Khan
Photo: © UHH/ Naue
former Research Associate
Key aspects of activity
- Khurasan; Documents and Papyri; Islamic Law
As an historian of the Islamic world, my published research focuses on three related fields of historical inquiry: Heresy and orthodoxy in medieval Islam (8th-11th centuries); the early Islamic empire at work (7th-10th centuries); and the history of printing and publishing houses in the Islamic world (Middle East and Indian subcontinent, 19th-20th centuries). Below is a list of my publications (previous and forthcoming). I do not share my research on corporate-academic platforms such as Research Gate and Academia Edu. If you are interested in one of my publications, please send me an email and I can send you a copy.
I received my training in medieval Islamic history. I read European history at University College London (UCL) and worked in political consulting in the Middle East before completing a Masters in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies (Distinction, 2008-9). In 2009, I moved to Oxford and read for an M.Phil in Medieval Islamic History at the University of Oxford, Faculty of Oriental Studies (Distinction, 2009-11). I spent another year in the Middle East and the Persian Gulf working in consulting, but the offer of a three-year graduate scholarship from the University of Oxford brought me back to complete a D.Phil in Oriental Studies (Islamic World). During my doctoral studies, I was awarded fellowships at Princeton University, the British Institute for Persian Studies (BIPS), the British Institute in Amman, and the Da’irat al-Ma’arif-i Buzurg-i Islami (Tehran). In 2014-15, I was appointed Lecturer in Islamic Studies and History at the University of Oxford, Faculty of Oriental Studies, where I taught history, religion, culture, and Arabic to undergraduate and graduate students.
My D.Phil thesis uses Arabic and Persian primary sources to investigate discourses of heresy, orthodoxy, and rebellion between the eighth-eleventh centuries. The thesis examines the formation of medieval Sunnism against the background of social and political developments.
My current research is dedicated to reconstructing the social, economic, political, and religious history of Khurasan between the seventh-tenth centuries. As a postdoctoral researcher at Universität Hamburg, I have begun work on a monograph studying the early Islamic empire and its workings in the imperial province of Khurasan, between the seventh-tenth centuries. This monograph uses recently published documentary sources in Arabic, Bactrian, Sogdian, and Pahlavi; numismatic evidence; and Arabic and Persian historical sources, to address the broader question of how the early Islamic empire operated across a wide agglomeration of territories and diverse ethnic and religious groups. The monograph provides a history of the early Islamic empire and how it functioned from the view of the province.
Based on research I conducted at Princeton, I have developed a second research interest in modern Islamic history and thought. I have written about transregional links between publishing houses, printing presses, and editors in the Middle East and Indian subcontinent.
I have been involved in organizing academic conferences and workshops. In September 2013, I was a co-convener of the Pembroke College (University of Oxford) Islamic Studies Colloquium. In 2014 (Hilary Term), I co-organised the seminar series, ‘Introducing the World of Islamic Manuscripts’, at the Faculty of Oriental Studies and the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies. I currently serve on the editorial board at Gorgias Press for its new book series on Islamic History and Thought.
My research languages are Arabic, Persian, Urdu, German, and French.
Since August 2015
Researcher Associate in the ERC project “The Islamic Empire at Work”
Lecturer in Islamic Studies and History, University of Oxford, Faculty of Oriental Studies
Ahmad Khan. “Review of A. C. S. Peacock and D. Tor (eds.), Medieval Central Asia and the Persianate World: Iranian Tradition and Islamic Civilisation”. Der Islam: Journal of the History and Culture of the Middle East (2018)
Ahmad Khan. “Review of T. Bernheimer, The ʿAlids: The First Family of Islam, 750-1200”. Der Islam: Journal of the History and Culture of the Middle East 95. (2018): S. 201-5.
A. Khan and E. Kendall (eds.). Reclaiming Islamic Tradition: Modern Interpretations of the Classical Heritage. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2016.
Ahmad Khan. “Islamic Tradition in an Age of Print: Editing, Printing, and Publishing the Classical Heritage”. Reclaiming Islamic Tradition: Modern Interpretations of the Classical Heritage . Hg. A. Khan and E. Kendall (eds.). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2016, S. 52-100.
Ahmad Khan. Early Islamic Khurasan - The Idea and Practice of the Empire. The Early Islamic Empire at Work Vol. 5. Studies in the History and Culture of the Middle East, Berlin: De Gruyter, forthcoming.