Pratibha Parmar was born in Nairobi, Kenya and came with her family to live in England in 1967. Before she began to make films, she was a youth and community worker working in the Asian community with young women.

She studied at Bradford University for her B.A. Hons degree and did postgraduate studies at the Cultural Studies Centre at Birmingham University. She travelled to India in 1975 and worked as volunteer in rural development projects around India. During this time she spent 3 months working in Calcutta with Mother Teresa.

She worked in the feminist publishing collective, Sheba Feminist Press in the mid 1980s, where she was responsible for editing and publishing writings by Asian and African-Caribbean women ,including the British publication of The Cancer Journals by Audre Lorde. She gave the Keynote address to the OUTWRITE conference in Boston in February 1999 and was invited to be a Regents Lecturer at the University of San Diego in Spring 1999.

The New Festival in New York did a tribute to Pratibha Parmar in June 1999. Pratibha is a Board member of Women in Film and Television (UK) and The Directors Guild of Great Britain.


Pratibha Parmar was the recipient of the Frameline Award in 1993. Frameline organise the world's largest lesbian and gay film festival every year in San Francisco. This award is presented to an individual who has made a significant and outstanding contribution to lesbian and gay media. She was invited to be a Grand Marshal for the Pride Parade in San Francisco in June 1995.

She was presented The Pink Peacock Award in 1995 by Trikone in Recognition of Exemplary Service to the South Asian Queer Community.

WARRIOR MARKS Winner of the Public Prize at the 11th International Womens Film Festival in Madrid, November 1994 Winner of the Audience Award at the 3rd Womens Film Festival in Paris, October 1994

KHUSH Winner of the Public Prize for Best Foreign Film at the 14th Creteil Womens Film Festival, Paris April 1992 Winner of the Audience Award for Best Documentary Short at the Frameline Film and Video Festival in San Francisco, June 1991 Winner of the Public Prize at the 7th International Womens Film Festival in Madrid, November 1991