WSU hosts Oscar and Emmy winning Pakistani activist and filmmaker to speak Nov. 15


Washington State University welcomes Oscar-winning director Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy For a public address Tues., Nov. 15, at 7:30 p.m. in Beasley Coliseum. This event, free and open to the public, is sponsored by the WSU Student Entertainment Board in collaboration with the Common Reading Program and the Global Campus.

Through her Pakistani production house SOC Films, American-educated Obaid-Chinoy makes films that bring key social issues to light. Her two Academy Award winning films, Saving Face (2012) and A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness (2015), focus on gender violence in Pakistan. 

Her work has also been recognized with six Emmy Awards, including an international Emmy Award for her 2009 film Pakistan’s Taliban Generation.


Obaid-Chinoy’s talk will combine clips from her films with discussion on their connection to larger issues of human rights and social justice.  The talk will conclude with audience questions.

A graduate of Smith College in Massachusetts, Obaid-Chinoy made her first film, Terror’s Children, for the New York Times.  Her most recent release, Song of Lahore, follows a group of musicians as they travel from Pakistan to perform in New York City. Some of her work has focused on Bangladeshi women soldiers deployed as peacekeepers in Haiti, the plight of Iraqi exiles and other global refugees, and transgendered persons in Pakistan.

She has also founded a center focusing on the preservation of Pakistan’s cultural and social heritage.

The Common Reading Program began in Pullman in 2007 to help students, their teachers, and the community better engage in academically centered critical thinking, communication, research, and learning around a body of shared information presented in a single, specially selected book.  This year’s book, I Am Malala, addresses the program’s 2015-2017 theme of “social justice and leadership.”  

For more information about the Common Reading, the book, and upcoming events visit:


Karen Weathermon, Common Reading Program co-director, WSU Undergraduate Education, 509-335-5488,

Emma Epperly, Communications and Marketing Junior Assistant, WSU Undergraduate Education, 509-335-9458,