Manan Ahmed

Manan Ahmed

Assistant Professor

502 Fayerweather Hall
Phone: (212) 851-0125
Office Hours: T 12:00 - 14:00


Ph.D. – University of Chicago, 2008
B.A. – Miami University, Ohio 1997
B.A. – Punjab University, 1991

Current Departmental Service

Acting Director, Center for International History and Faculty Co-ordinator, History in Action.

Interests and Research

Manan Ahmed, Assistant Professor, is interested in the relationship between text, space and narrative. His work focuses on narratives of conquest. His work on Islam’s arrival to Sind (India) in the early 8th century traces the longue durée history of contestations among varied polities and communities. His areas of specialization include the political and cultural history of Islam in South and Southeast Asia, frontier-spaces and the city in medieval South Asia, imperial and colonial historiography, and philology. He is involved in Digital Humanities projects - especially with visualizing space in medieval texts and texualizing medieval and early-modern maps. Ahmed is currently working on a study of the early 13th century account of Uch, Sind. His articles can be found at Columbia Academic Commons


Manan Ahmed teaches a survey of South Asia from medieval to the early modern period in the Fall semester. In Spring 2015, he will be teaching a graduate seminar on Borderlands which is a "Hybrid Course" with a G.I.S. Lab attached to it. He teaches an undergraduate seminar on Mughal memoirs entitled "The Worlds of Mughal India". Another regular course is a history of walking-accounts of the Central and South Asia, entitled "Walking and Colonialism". His course syllabi are available on github.

Selected Publications

Manan Ahmed Asif, "Idols in the Archive." The Journal of Asian Studies, February, 2014: 73(1).

Manan Ahmed Asif,"A Demon With Ruby Eyes." The Medieval History Journal, October, 2013; 16 (2).

Manan Ahmed Asif, "Advent of Islam in South Asia" in Roger Long (edited), History of Pakistan, (Karachi: Oxford University Press) April, 2015.

Manan Ahmed Asif, "Future's Past" in Adil Najam and Moeed Yusuf (edited) South Asia 2060, (London: Anthem Press) July, 2013.

Manan Ahmed, "The Long Thirteenth Century of the Chachnama." The Indian Economic and Social History Review, 49, 4 (2012): 459-91.

Manan Ahmed, "Introduction," The Indian Economic and Social History Review, 49, 4 (2012): 455-57.

Manan Ahmed,"Adam's Mirror: The Frontier in the Imperial Imagination" in Rohit Chopra (edited)Reflections on Empire Redux, Economic and Political Weekly vol. XLVI, no. 13, March-April, 2011.

Manan Ahmed. Where the Wild Frontiers Are: Pakistan and the American Imagination. Just World Books, 2011.