Nichola Khan

Nichola Khan

DPhil Social Anthropology, DR

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

Projects related to refugees, asylum seeking, migration, forced displacement, climate related mobilities, migrant health and mental health, migrants and cities, Pakistan, Afghanistan, South China Sea, Europe

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Personal profile


Nichola Khan is Professor of Human Geography and Ethnography. She works at the interface of migration, violence, and mental/health in conflict, post-conflict, and 'post'colonial societies: specifically, using ethnography to research urban violence among Pakistan’s Urdu-speaking migrant communities in the megacity of Karachi, transnational refugee migration from Afghanistan, and more recently asylum seekers receiving hospital-based medical and psychiatric care in Paris. She is interested in developing interdisciplinary theory‑ using philosophical, existential, anthropological and literary approaches- to think about challenges related to migration and mobility, colonial geneaologies in everyday life, and the interiority of violence. She has published five books: ‘Mohajir Militancy in Pakistan’ (2010, 2012, Routledge); ‘Cityscapes of Violence in Karachi’ (2017 ed., Oxford University Press; Hurst & Co.); 'Mental Disorder: Anthropological Insights (2017, University of Toronto Press); ‘Arc of the Journeyman: Afghan Migrants in England’ (2020, University of Minnesota Press); and 'The Breath of Empire' (2023, Studies in Literary Anthropology series, Palgrave Macmillan). She is an International Fellow at the Institut Convergences Migrations Paris, and has held visiting Scholarships at the National University of Singapore (2017) and Harvard Medical School (2020). She is a Trustee and Council member of the Royal Anthropological Institute. She regularly provides legal expert witness testimony and reports. Please contact her for PhD supervision or research enquiries in these and related areas.



  • GN Anthropology
  • HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
  • H Social Sciences (General)


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