Skip to Main Content Skip to Main Navigation
search this website
search this website

Lehman College Logo Click Here to go back to Homepage

Department of African and African-American Studies at Lehman College

Faculty - Mariama Khan

Mariama Khan E-mail Address:
Phone: 718-960-7722
Office: Carman Hall, Room 281
Office Hours: T, 2:00pm-3:00pm, or by appointment
Rank: Adjunct Lecturer
Degrees and Sources of Degrees: B.A., Saint Mary’s University, Halifax, Canada.; M.A., Brandeis University, Waltham.; M.A., University of Turin/ IITCILO, Turino, Italy

Mariama Khan, a Gambian national,  received her B.A. in International Development Studies (major) and English(minor) from Saint Mary’s University (SMU), Halifax, Canada. She received her MA in Sustainable International Development Studies (SID) from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University, Waltham. Before this degree, she received a previous MA in Management of Development from the University of Turino and the International Training Center of the International Labour Organization (ITCILO) in Turino, Italy. She has also conducted doctoral research work at the Centre of African Studies, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland.
A former Secretary-General and Head of the Civil Service and Permanent Secretary in the Office of the President of the Republic of The Gambia, she has worked for the Ministries of Finance and Economic Affairs, the Office of the Vice President and Women’s Affairs, the Environment and Natural Resources and Information and Communication. She is a scholar of culture and development in West Africa, as well as a poet and a documentary filmmaker.  Her first collection of poems, Futa Toro, was published in 2003. In 2004, she co-published another volume named Juffureh: kissing you with hurting lips, with Bamba Khan, her brother. They also co-authored Proverbs of the Senegambia. Mariama was involved in many youth organizations in The Gambia . She founded the Fouta Toro drama group, which helped Gambian youth to organize and stage plays on social issues. She also set up a non-profit organization called Documentary Film Initiative- The Gambia (DFI-Gambia), which produces socially-engaged media. Her documentary films have been screened in a number of countries around the world. One of her films, Sutura, won a prize in the 2008 United Nations Population Fund Agency’s (UNFPA) Pan-African Film Festival. She has directed and produced five films. In 2014, she produced three short films for the University of Edinburgh Student Experience Project (SEP). Her current scholarship focuses on the relation between Indigenous languages and Africa’s development, as well as the performance of statehood, cross-border politics, culture, transport, trade and religious networks in West Africa. Mariama has extensively travelled around the world.


  • Khan, Mariama. 2016. “Banjul.” In CAPITALS: A Poetry Anthology on the Capital cities of the world, edited by Abhay K., New York: Bloomsbury.
  • Khan, Mariama. 2016. “Indigenous Languages and Africa’s Development Dilemma.” In Endogenous Development, Naïve romanticism or practical route to sustainable African development, edited by Chiku Malunga and Susan H. Holcombe, London: Routledge, 150 – 162.
  • Khan, Mariama. Sept. 2014, “Indigenous Languages and Africa’s Development Dilemma:  Journal of Development in Practice (DiP), pp. 764- 776.
  • Khan, Mariama. 2012. Men and Fame. In: Astley Neil and Anne Selby (eds).  The World Record: international voices from Southbank’s Poetry Parnassus. London:Bloodaxe Publisher
  • Khan, Mariama.  2009. Indigenous Languages: The Way to Africa’s Renaissance. Brikama: Sandeng Publishers.
  • Khan, Bamba and Mariama Khan (co-authored). 2004. Juffureh: Kissing You with Hurting-lips. Brikama: Sandeng Publishers.
  • Khan, Bamba and Mariama Khan (co-authored).2004. Proverbs of The SeneGambia. Brikama: Sandeng  Publishers  
  • Khan, Mariama. 2003. Futa Toro. Brikama: Sandeng Publishers
  • Published various works in newspapers, magazines in The Gambia and art exhibitions held by Art Exchange

Also Published in:

  • Card Houses, anthology, published by St: Thomas University, Fredericton, Canada
  • The Naswark Review, published by St: Thomas University, Fredericton, Canada 

Teaching Fellowships/ Assignments:

  • Adjunct Lecturer  African History - 01/2018 – 05/2018 
    Lehman College, New York, USA   
  • Adjunct Lecturer     African Civilizations” - 01/2018 – 05/2018 
    Lehman  College, New York, USA
  • Course Convener    “West Africa: Culture, Development and the State” - 01/2015 – 05/2015
    Pomona College, California, USA                                                                
  • Teaching Assistant    “Roots of African Poverty and Underdevelopment” - 01/2012 – 04/2012  
    Graduate School for Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh     
    Edinburgh, Scotland
  • Teaching Assistant   “Creating a Microfinance Institution” - 03/2008 – 05/2008
    Heller School for Social Policy and Management; Brandeis University; Waltham, MA       
  • Teaching Assistant   “Micro-Enterprise Development and Finance” - 01/2008 – 03/2008
    Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA
  • Teaching Assistant   “A Rights- Based Approach to Development” - 09/2007 – 12/2007
    Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA

Academic and Research Fellowships

  • Visiting Research Fellow -  11/ 2013 - 05/2014
    African Studies Centre, Boston University, Boston, USA
  • Principal’s Career Development Scholarship   - 11/ 2011 – 11/2014
    Graduate School for Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland
  • Poet- in Residence -  05/2012 – 06/2012               
    Writer’s Residency at Cove Park, Scotland                                                      
  • World Bank – Joint- Japan Scholar - 09/ 2006- 05/2008
    Heller School, Brandeis University, Waltham, USA                                         
  • International Labour Organisation (ILO) Fellow -  12/2005- 07/2006
    The International Training Centre of the ILO, Turin, Italy                      
  • UNESCO Research Fellow - 06/2005 - 08/2005
    UNESCO/ Suzanne Mubarak Japan-Egypt Friendship Research Fellowship for the Empowerment of Women Researchers in Peace and Gender Studies at the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Bibliotheca Alexanderina, Alexandria, Egypt                                      
  • Oxfam America Researcher for “Saving for Change Initiative”  
    Kedougou, Senegal - Summer 2007

Positions Held in University Students Associations

  • Chairperson (resigned due to other conflicting commitments) -  01/2012 - 05/2012 
    African Students Association, CAS, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland
  • Vice Chairperson  - 09/2007- 08/2008
    Brandeis University African Students Association (BUAF), Heller School, Waltham, MA