Tamana Ayazi is an Afghan filmmaker, journalist and human rights advocate.

Why you should listen

Born and raised in Balkh, in the northern region of Afghanistan, Tamana Ayazi is a passionate champion of freedom of thought and human rights who uses storytelling as a tool to advocate for equality and positive change. She became a National Geographic Explorer in 2018, and in 2022 began assisting Amnesty International in its research focused on women and children in Afghanistan.

Ayazi’s film credits include the 2019 Academy Award-winning short documentary Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You're a Girl). Her first feature-length documentary, In Her Hands, co-directed by Marcel Mettelsiefen, premiered at the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival in September 2022, won the Audience Award at the 2022 Camden International Film Festival and will be available to stream on Netflix on November 16, 2022.

Tamana Ayazi’s TED talk

More news and ideas from Tamana Ayazi


TEDWomen Presents: Women leading change, with Tamana Ayazi and Kat Craig

October 24, 2022

If there’s a constant in our lives, it’s change. The first day of TEDWomen Presents — an online festival featuring interviews with leading women, interactive workshops, specially curated film screenings and more — focused on change and the challenges that come with it, culminating in a moving conversation between filmmaker Tamana Ayazi and human rights lawyer […]

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