Main content

Kirsty Young interviews human rights activist Sara Khan.

Kirsty Young's castaway is Sara Khan.

A British Muslim human rights activist, she's the director of Inspire, a counter-extremism and women's rights organisation which she co-founded in 2009.

Born in Bradford in 1980 to Pakistani parents, she decided to wear the veil when she was thirteen changing her mind eighteen years later. She studied Pharmacy at the University of Manchester but never felt she was fulfilling her potential, and set up Inspire in her home. She has been at the heart of various campaigns to raise awareness of her cause from Jihad Against Violence to #MakingAStand which encouraged women in particular to stand up against extremism.

In 2009 she was listed in the Equality and Human Rights Commission Muslim Women's Power List and in 2015 was included in BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour Power List. She is currently sitting on the Department for Education's Due Diligence and Counter-Extremism Expert Reference Group and on the Government's Community Engagement Forum.

Producer: Cathy Drysdale.

Available now

35 minutes

Last on

Fri 1 Jul 2016 09:00

Music Played

  • The Supremes

    You Keep Me Hangin' On

    • Motown.
  • Kishore Kumar & Manna Dey

    Yeh Dosti Hum Nahin (Happy)

    • Universal.
  • Mozart

    Lacrimosa dies illa from Requiem in d minor, K.626

    Performer: London Philharmonic Choir.
    • Mozart: Requiem.
    • EMI.
  • Guns N’ Roses

    Sweet Child O’ Mine

    • Geffen.

    • Sam Cooke

      A Change is Gonna Come

      • RCA.
  • Lana Del Rey

    Summertime Sadness

    • Universal.
  • Christina Aguilera


    • RCA.
  • Samuel Barber

    Adagio for Strings

    Performer: New York Philharmonic.
    • Leonard Bernstein: The Royal Edition.
    • Sony Classical.

    The Great Theft: Wrestling Islam from the Extremists by Khaled M. Abou El Fadl


    Yorkshire Tea


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Sara Khan
Producer Cathy Drysdale


  • Sun 26 Jun 2016 11:15
  • Fri 1 Jul 2016 09:00

The Desert Island Discs podcast

The Desert Island Discs podcast

Subscribe or download individual episodes.

Listen to over 2,000 programmes



Read the surprising things we've learned about some stand-out castaways.

The 75th anniversary of Desert Island Discs

The 75th anniversary of Desert Island Discs

Featuring David Beckham, the funniest and most moving moments, animations and quizzes.

The Lark Ascending – The People’s Desert Island Disc

The Lark Ascending – The People’s Desert Island Disc

Why does Vaughan Williams’s masterpiece appeal to so many castaways?