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Samar Minallah Khan

Fern Holland Award, 2012

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Focus Areas

Access to Justice
Gender Equality & Women's Rights

“I have a strong belief that it’ s extremely important to engage men to shift culture. I believe that this is one of the most important answers to culturally-sanctioned forms of violence against women.”

Samar Minallah Khan is a Pakistani filmmaker, anthropologist and activist. She tells true stories about violence against women and the men who refuse to accept it. To tell these stories, Samar travels to dangerous environments – remote villages where prejudice is deeply entrenched and local notions of justice outrank human rights law.

She believes it’ s critical to lift up examples of men and boys who reject violence against women. These examples of real-life courage will ultimately shift culture, says Samar. Her films are translated into local dialects and shown in rural areas throughout Pakistan. Samar creates space for community dialogue and engages diverse voices. Despite threats and harassment, she says she will continue telling stories that need to be told in order to create a more peaceful world for women and girls.