Harley Spiller Menu Collection

Date Range: 18792009
Survey Conducted: Mon, 2009-03-16
Creator: Spiller, Harley (1960-)

History: Harley Spiller (1960- ) moved to New York after college in 1981 to pursue a career in the museum field. A native of Buffalo, NY and a graduate of Northwestern University, the self-described “meat and potatoes” Spiller was promptly introduced to the diverse cuisine of New York City. He received a job as an administrative assistant for the curatorial department of the Jewish Museum, and with his tight annual salary, found himself going to Chinatown to buy inexpensive food. According to Guinness World Records, he now holds the largest menu collection in private hands.

South Asian Women’s Creative Collective Records

Date Range: 19972009
Survey Conducted: Tue, 2009-11-10
Creator: South Asian Women’s Creative Collective

History: In 1997, Jaishri Abichandani founded the South Asian Women’s Creative Collective (SAWCC) to foster a sense of community among South Asian women artists and creative professionals in New York City. Fourteen women, who were invited through community-based organizations such as Sakhi for South Asian Women and the South Asian Lesbian and Gay Association (SALGA), attended SAWCC’s first meeting in the offices of the Sister Fund. In March 1998, the collective held its first annual fundraiser and art show, “Karma Kollage,” which drew a crowd of over 300. Soon, SAWCC, the only New York–based South Asian arts organization at the time, began meeting monthly at the Asian American Writers’ Workshop, providing a space for members to collaborate, network, share their work, and gain exposure.

South Asian Journalists Association Records

Date Range: 19942010
Survey Conducted: Tue, 2010-02-09
Creator: South Asian Journalists Association

History: In the Spring of 1994, four South Asian journalists and friends met in a New York City restaurant and founded the South Asian Journalists Association—an organization committed to providing networking opportunities for journalists of South Asian descent and those with an interest in South Asia and its diaspora. Among them was Sreenath Sreenivasan, now Dean of Student Affairs and Professor of Professional Practice in the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University, in whose office SAJA’s records reside. By 1995, the organization had 200 New York City-based members and was hosting monthly meetings. Members included correspondents, reporters, and editors for South Asia-based publications (e.g. Associated Press of Pakistan, India Today), ethnic media outlets based in the United States (e.g. India Abroad, Minaret), and mainstream news sources (e.g. Time, Wall Street Journal). Read more

Soh Daiko Records

Soh Daiko_Credit_Kim NakashimaDate Range: 19801999
Survey Conducted: Sat, 2008-11-15
Creator: Soh Daiko

History: Soh Daiko was founded in 1979 as the first taiko group on the East Coast. Originally formed by members of the New York Buddhist Church, the group now consists of members from diverse backgrounds and professions. Members receive instruction on drum building, basic taiko skills and philosophy from senior members and visiting expert drummers. The group currently operates as a collective in which decisions are made by consensus; however, the group structure allows for elected officers who serve in the capacities of Chairperson, Treasurer, Secretary, Practice Committee, and Practice Leaders.

Neil Sih Papers

Date Range: 1934
Survey Conducted: Fri, 2008-11-14
Creator: Sih, Neil

History: Neil Sih was a Chinese Communist who became active in the Trotskyist Left Opposition in China. Born as Liu Renjing, he took the pseudonym of Neil Sih, which he claimed was given to him by Leon Trotsky. As a member of the Left Opposition, Sih was a staunch opponent of Chen Dixiu, then the de facto leader of the movement, whom Sih may have seen as an obstacle to his own succession in party leadership. Critical of the ruling party of China, The Kuomintang, Sih was jailed and tortured. In March 1937, four months prior to his scheduled discharge, Sih was released from prison after aligning himself with the Kuomintang. As a result, he was expelled from the Left Opposition, and later joined the Publicity Section of the National Military Council of the Kuomintang.

Noel Shaw Papers

Date Range: 19922003
Survey Conducted: Thu, 2010-11-11
Creator: Shaw, Noel

History: Born in 1961 in New York City, Noel Shaw is a filmmaker and writer whose work explores the experiences of the Filipino diaspora and highlights the diversity within it. Most recently, he directed, produced, and wrote the short Kundiman(Pinoy Noir Films, 2008), which illustrates the impact of politics on an individual’s life. His work has been screened at the London Film Festival, Brussels International Independent Film Festival, the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, and the Asian American International Film Festival in New York City. He served as the Distribution & Marketing Director at Third World Newsreel from 1999 to 2001 and as the Publications Director at the Asian American Writers’ Workshop from 2001 to 2004.

Jack G. Shaheen Archive

Date Range: 19112009jackcrop
Creator: Shaheen, Jack G. (1935-2017)
History: Born in 1935 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Dr. Jack G. Shaheen dedicated his career to identifying and contesting damaging stereotypes of Arabs and Muslims in American media. A professor, author, and professional consultant for films such as Syriana and Three Kings, Shaheen, with the help of his wife Bernice Shaheen, collected and analyzed materials which depicted Arabs and Muslims as the godless “cultural other.” The result is the Jack G. Shaheen Archive.

Serpent’s Tail/High Risk Records

Date Range: 19901997
Survey Conducted: Tue, 2009-10-06
Creator: Serpent’s Tail/High Risk Archive

History:
 High Risk Books was founded in New York City in 1993 by Ira Silverberg as an imprint of Serpent’s Tail Press in London. Dedicated to publishing challenging, innovative, and progressive literature, High Risk Books transcended the traditional boundaries of publishing to provoke and inspire a new generation of writers and readers. Ira Silverberg told The New York Times in a March 13, 1994 interview that he and his co-editor Amy Scholder wanted to “catch an area of the market that’s being overlooked by mainstream houses. . . . We’re working with a lot of gay men, lesbians, and African Americans, because the voices of under served communities tend to shed more light on societal conditions than the voices of the people who have the franchise. That’s not to say we won’t publish straight white men.” While connected by a certain subversive impulse, authors as diverse as William Burroughs, Kathy Acker, June Jordan, Sapphire, Ameena Meer, Kenzaburo Oe and many others were published by High Risk.
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SALGA-NYC, Serving the Queer Desi Community Records

Date Range: 19952008
Survey Conducted: Fri, 2010-08-13
Creator: SALGA-NYC, Serving the Queer Desi Community Report

History: SALGA-NYC, Serving the Queer Desi Community is committed to combating all forms of oppression and discrimination. The all-volunteer non-profit organization promotes “awareness, tolerance, acceptance, empowerment and safe spaces for sexual minorities and people of all gender identities, who trace their heritage to South Asia or who identify as South Asian.” Its programming includes monthly support group meetings (open to people who identify as both queer and South Asian), workshops, a weekly hotline (supported by Asian & Pacific Islander Coalition on HIV/AIDS, The Stonewall Foundation, and Trikone, San Francisco), and political, cultural, and social events that are open to the general public. The recognitions that the organization has received include the 1995 Community Service Award from the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. Read more

SAKHI for South Asian Women Records

Date Range: 19902009
Survey Conducted: Tue, 2010-04-20
Creator: SAKHI for South Asian Women

History: SAKHI for South Asian Women is a New York City-based not-for-profit dedicated to ending domestic violence against women. Founded in 1989 by a group of five South Asian women from diverse professional backgrounds, SAKHI, meaning “woman friend,” provides culturally-sensitive and language-specific support to survivors of domestic violence. The organization works to mobilize the South Asian community to actively engage in the movement to end violence against women, challenging the silence surrounding domestic abuse within the community. Their work with survivors includes crisis intervention, monthly support groups, assistance in accessing free or low-cost legal representation, health services, public benefits and housing, and accompaniments and translation assistance in court, during health care visits, and at welfare agencies. Their Economic Empowerment Program assists survivors on their paths to self-sufficiency, providing classes and workshops on basic computer literacy, English communication, resume writing, and internet job-searching. Their Swarna Chalasani Economic empowerment fund provides small grants to qualified survivors to pursue career and educational opportunities. Read more