Associate Professor of English; Associate Professor of Afroamerican and African Studies; Director of the Global Islamic Studies Center, International Institute.
Dr. Aliyah Khan is associate professor in the U-M Department of Afroamerican and African Studies, and the Department of English Language and Literature. She is also Director of the Global Islamic Studies Center (GISC) at the International Institute. Dr. Khan specializes in postcolonial Caribbean literature and the contemporary literature of the Muslim and Islamic worlds, with a particular focus on the intersections of race, gender, and Islam in the hemispheric Americas, including in immigrant communities in North America. She has also presented and taught widely in the field of Muslim representation in comics and graphic novels, and is on the editorial board of Bloombsbury Critical Guides in Comics Studies.
Far from Mecca: Globalizing the Muslim Caribbean (Rutgers University Press and University of the West Indies Press 2020), Dr. Khan’s recent book, is the first academic monograph on the literature, history, and music of Caribbean Islam, focusing on Guyana, Trinidad, and Jamaica, and on enslaved Muslim West Africans, indentured Indian colonial sugar plantation laborers, and their Muslim Caribbean descendants. Far from Mecca garnered three national awards: honorable mention in the 2020-2021 Modern Language Association Prize for a first book; the 2018-2019 American Comparative Literature Association Helen Tartar First Book Subvention Award; and the 2017-2018 American Association of University Women (AAUW) Postdoctoral Research National Fellowship award. Dr. Khan’s work has also appeared in academic venues including GLQ, the Caribbean Review of Gender Studies, Caribbean Quarterly, the Journal of West Indian Literature, and Studies in Canadian Literature/Études en littérature canadienne. Her nonfiction writing has appeared in media including the Caribbean fiction and nonfiction collection Bookmarked (2021), Pree: Caribbean Literature, Agents of Ishq, and most recently in the literary magazine Guernica.
Dr. Khan is an advisory board member of the Journal for the Study of Indentureship and its Legacies, a national university program consultant on diversity, equity, and inclusion issues with a specialty in Africana and Islamic Studies programs, a longstanding member of the advisory board of the U-M Arab and Muslim American Studies Program in the Department of American Culture, and a fellow of the U-M Center for World Performance Studies and the Center for Islam in the Contemporary World at Shenandoah University, VA, for her research on Urdu Indo-Caribbean Muslim qasida devotional songs. She is currently conducting research for a book project on Caribbean hurricanes, regional environmental disasters and oil drilling, and their implications for contemporary migration and economies in the hemispheric Americas.
Reviews of Dr. Khan's work and written interviews can be viewed at American Muslim Today, Religion News (reprinted in the Washington Post), the Guyana Chronicle, the Black Agenda Report, and on the U.K./Dubai Islamic arts forum Bayt al Fann.
Her podcasts and interviews on the Caribbean, Islam, and Muslims can be heard on National Public Radio, The Maydan, Sapelo Square, Strictly Facts: A Guide to Caribbean History & Culture Podcast, the Polis Project, the New Books Network, and Chicago’s Radio Islam.
Please note: Dr. Khan is on Michigan Humanities Fellowship leave in the Winter 2023 semester.
- Department of Afroamerican and African Studies
- Department of English Language and Literature
- Director, Global Islamic Studies Center, International Institute
- Arab and Muslim American Studies Program in American Culture
- Asian/Pacific Islander American Studies Program
- Institute for Research on Women and Gender
- Caribbean Literature
- Muslim and Islamic Literatures
- Postcolonial Ecocritism
- Gender and Sexuality
- Comics and Graphic Novels
Spring 2023 Course
- AAS 202, Intro to African Diaspora Studies (formerly Intro to Afro-Caribbean Studies)
Far from Mecca: Globalizing the Muslim Caribbean at Rutgers University Press
Far from Mecca: Globalizing the Muslim Caribbean at the University of the West Indies Press
Far from Mecca: Globalizing the Muslim Caribbean on Amazon
Bookmarked: Pree New Caribbean Writing at Rebel Women Lit