Material that has helped inform my understanding of my Asian American identity, in some way or other.
Actors & Comedians
Magazines & News Sources
Collectives & Orgs
Please email me at email@example.com
with questions, recommendations for the archive or library, suggestions for collaboration, or other thoughts.
MAGAZINES & NEWS SOURCES…
WHAT IS THIS? A high-quality, hand-crafted biannual publication celebrating the imaginations, creativity, and spirituality of women. Created by an art collective of North London-based female artists (Sofia Niazi, Rose Nordin, Heiba Lamara and Sabba Khan), each issue includes dozens of contributions from female activists, artists and writers. Originally, the focus of the zine was on young Muslim women, but in its lifespan of five issues it has broadened to include women of all races and religions.
WHY IS IT INCLUDED HERE? I love the aesthetic of this publication - super visual, hand-crafted, design for and by brown women. Plus, interviews with the artists behind OOMK show that they are both intentional and knowledgeable about the niche they are filling, their process of production and their selected contributors - I’m inspired by how they use the medium of design to unapologetically create a highly charged and political showcase of faith and creativity.
WHAT IS THIS? Race Files is the blog of ChangeLab, a grassroots political lab working to revitalize a contemporary Asian American politics grounded in multiracial solidarity. Their team publishes concise pieces once or twice a month on the blog, bringing a critical lens and analysis to racial justice work in the service of strengthening Asian American antiracist politics.
WHY IS IT INCLUDED HERE? Race Files is one of my go-to digital sources to stay connected to the pulse of how radical Asian Americans are contextualizing themselves in the face of capitalism. Soya Jung, Scot Nakagawa, and their network are a bunch of heavy-hitters who help fill a glaring void for me on the internet - which is, where do I turn to when I want to get the Asian American activist/academic/organizer perspective on current events?
WHAT IS THIS? An online lifestyle magazine for South Asians.
WHY IS IT INCLUDED HERE? I visit The Aerogram to expose myself to current dance, music, books, music, trending hashtags, and other elements of culture that relate to South Asians and Indian Americans. Not that I feel this is a claim I could back up literally at all, but visiting this site makes me feel like I’m supporting my own community while also getting updates on pop culture trash.
WHAT IS THIS? Mumbai-based Paper Planes is a subscription service that delivers a curated list of independent print publications to readers in India. Subscribers have access to over 40 magazines offered in the online store.
WHY IS IT INCLUDED HERE? Founder Nupur Joshi Thanks has great taste in design, and the list of magazines that she’s made accessible through Paper Plans looks tasty. My limited experience rooting around the tiny, crammed book vendors in Khan Market shows that cutting edge art & design print magazines from independent publishers can be pretty hard to come by in the motherland’s big cities, so I’m keeping this in my back pocket in the event that I end up living in India for a while and need access to indie design mag inspiration.
WHAT IS THIS? Sukeban is an online platform that almost exclusively features female diasporic Asian aspiring creatives, creating a space for young photographers, artists, stylists, designers, and writers a space to showcase their talents and find inspiration. Their first print issue became available for sale in late 2016.
WHY IS IT INCLUDED HERE? The word Sukeban means delinquent girl or boss girl in Japanese. Scrolling through the “Girls by Girls” section of the platform - in which girls from all over the world document another girl - endlessly inspires me; the photography as well as the young women of color featured in this section glorify the empowered, delinquent, femme aesthetic that is uniquely Sukeban. The Instagram account of Erika Bowes - the UK-based 21-year-old half-British, half-Japanese photographer, stylist, and co-founder of the platform - follows this same aesthetic. It’s hot.
WHAT IS THIS? HYFN is a platform developed by videographer/artist Atif Ateeq and photographer Humai Mustafa that documents the rising imagination within the brown community, featuring young creatives from South Asian and Muslim communities. The blend between tradition and the modern creative experience produced the name HYFN, as the founders seek to focus on individuals with a “HFYNated identity.”
WHY IS IT INCLUDED HERE? There’s a lot of overlap between the artists HYFN highlights and the ones included in the Hardly Un-American library and archive, like Babbu the Painter, HateCopy, Swet Shop Boys, Kohinoorgasm, and more. Though the project seems to still be getting off the ground, operating mainly as a series of blogposts on their site, they’re doing a great and reliable job of highlighting that particular community that effortlessly blends South Asian and Western tradition and creative experience.