Jack G. Shaheen Papers
Language of Materials
Dr. Jack G. Shaheen (1935-2017) was a professor, author, and consultant who dedicated his career to identifying and contesting stereotypes of Arabs and Muslims in American media. The Jack G. Shaheen Papers date from 1943 to 2012 and document Shaheen's scholarly and popular writing and research in media analysis; his media accountability activism through the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC); and his consultation work on legal cases as well as the entertainment industry. The collection includes printed and born-digital draft and revised writings, speeches, notes, research and subject files, reports, correspondence, and sound and video recordings of Shaheen's speeches. The collection also contains material collected by Shaheen, including comic books; editorial cartoons; recordings of movies, television shows, and cartoons; magazines; posters; advertisements; toys; games; and other ephemera, which depict Arabs and Muslims in American popular culture and mass media from the late 19th to the 21st centuries.
Dr. Jack G. Shaheen (1935-2017) was a professor, author, and consultant who dedicated his career to identifying and contesting stereotypes of Arabs and Muslims in American media. His research analyzes the origins of these stereotypes, their persistence, the ways in which they affect perceptions of Arabs and Muslims in society, and presents solutions to counter them effectively. He was a professor emeritus of Mass Communications at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, Illinois where he taught between 1969 and 1994, and was a Fulbright lecturer in Mass Communications at the American University of Beirut in 1974 and 1975 and at the University of Jordan in 1982.
Shaheen began his research into Arab stereotypes in 1974 and collected materials which contained Arab stereotypes, both negative and positive. He wrote books, popular and scholarly articles, and op-eds, and lectured at colleges and universities, private institutions, and at conferences and conventions. After the events of September 11, 2011, he documented and fought stereotypes of Muslims as well. His books include The TV Arab (1984), Guilty: Hollywood's Verdict on Arabs after 9/11 (2008), and Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People (2001), which was produced as a documentary in 2006. Shaheen worked as a consultant on legal cases and in the entertainment industry, most notably on the films Three Kings (1999) and Syriana (2005).
The collection is arranged in the following series and subseries:
Series I. Writings
Subseries I.A. Books and Documentary
Subseries I.B. Scholarly Articles and Book Chapters
Subseries I.C. Popular News Articles and Op-Eds
Subseries I.D. Film Reviews
Subseries I.E. Speeches, Lectures, and Presentations
Subseries I.F. Articles and Recordings Featuring, Interviewing, or Citing Shaheen
Series II. Media Research and Advocacy Files
Subseries II.A. Research Files
Subseries II.B. Advocacy and Media Accountability Files
Series III. Consulting Files
Subseries III.A. Entertainment Productions
Subseries III.B. Legal Case Files
Series IV. Subject Files
Series V. Study Artifacts and Ephemera
Series VI. Video Recordings and Films
Series VII. 2018 Accretion
Series VIII. 2020 Accretion
Scope and Contents
The Jack G. Shaheen Papers date from 1943 to 2012, with the bulk of the material dating between 1968 and 2002, and document Shaheen's scholarly and popular work in media and cultural analysis. The collection includes Shaheen's writings, speeches, research files, notes, and correspondence in print, audiovisual, and born-digital formats. Shaheen's media accountability work, carried out both independently and with the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), is also represented through correspondence, writings, research, case files, and written reports. The bulk of the collection includes material collected by Shaheen which depicts Arabs and Muslims in American popular culture and mass media from the late 19th to the 21st century, much of which he used in his writings and speeches. These materials include recordings of movies, television episodes, cartoons, and music videos; comic books; editorial cartoons; motion picture posters and stills; advertisements; video and board games; film and television scripts; a Halloween mask; t-shirts; toys; and other ephemera.
Conditions Governing Access
Materials are open without restriction.
Conditions Governing Use
Any rights (including copyright and related rights to publicity and privacy) held by Jack G. Shaheen were transferred to New York University in 2010 by Jack G. Shaheen. Permission to publish or reproduce materials in this collection must be secured from the Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Identification of item, date; Jack G. Shaheen Papers; TAM 535; box number; folder number; OR electronic record identifier; Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives, New York University.
Location of Materials
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated by Jack G. Shaheen in 2010; additional materials were donated by Shaheen in 2011 and 2012, and by Bernice Shaheen in 2018, 2019, March 2020, and March 2023. The accession numbers associated with these gifts are 2010.037, 2011.074, 2012.002, 2012.091, 2017.058, 2018.066, 2018.142, 2019.082, 2020.022, and 2023.066
Roughly 73 linear feet of video recordings (VHS cassettes and DVDs) and films were separated from the paper materials in 2011 and a video collection (VIDEOS.015) was created for these materials. In 2015, the VHS cassettes and DVDs were deaccessioned from the collection and sent to the Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies and the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU. Commercially available titles were returned to the Tamiment Library and reincorporated into the collection in June 2017. In October 2017 two boxes of material were sent to the Tamiment Library from the Asian/Pacific/American Institute containing sound recordings, commercial video recordings, and paper material.
Audiovisual Access Policies and Procedures
Access to audiovisual materials in this collection is available through digitized access copies. Researchers may view an item's original container, but the media themselves are not available for playback because of preservation concerns. Materials that have already been digitized are noted in the collection's finding aid and can be requested in our reading room. Materials not yet digitized will need to have access copies made before they can be used. To request an access copy, or if you are unsure if an item has been digitized, please contact email@example.com with the collection name, collection number, and a description of the item(s) requested. A staff member will respond to you with further information.
Materials in Series VI are unavailable for playback.
Born-Digital Access Policies and Procedures
Advance notice is required for the use of computer records. Original physical digital media is restricted. Born-digital materials have not been transferred and may not be available to researchers. Researchers may request access copies. To request that material be transferred, or if you are unsure if material has been transferred, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with the collection name, collection number, and a description of the item(s) requested. A staff member will respond to you with further information.
Duplicative clippings, periodicals, and video recordings were deaccessioned. One blank floppy disk was deaccessioned.
Materials received as part of accession 2012.002 were separated from the collection and a non-print poster collection was created for them. These materials were not arranged or described and were reincorporated into the collection in June 2017. Roughly 73 linear feet of video recordings (VHS cassettes and DVDs) and films were separated from the paper materials in 2011 and a video collection (VIDEOS.015) was created for these materials. In 2015, the VHS cassettes and DVDs were deaccessioned from the collection and sent to the Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies and the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU. Commercially available titles were returned to the Tamiment Library and reincorporated into the collection in June 2017. 16 linear feet of books were separated from the collection and added to the Bobst Library's general collection in June 2017. Material protected under attorney work-product doctrine was removed from the collection and returned to the donor in June 2017. In 2018, artifacts and off-air recordings were returned to the donor.
About this Guide
Between 2013 and 2014, the paper portion of the collection was surveyed by a graduate student assistant who completed partial processing of the collection. Several linear feet of materials were removed from their original order and housing. They were arranged into series and subseries according to the current arrangement of the collection.
In July 2015, the entire collection was surveyed by an archivist and a processing plan was created with the current arrangement scheme. The arrangement scheme reflects what was determined to be the collection's original order from the material that had not been processed in 2013 and 2014, and the order of materials that were arranged at that time.
In May 2017, the entire collection was resurveyed by an archivist and arranged into the current arrangement scheme. Material previously separated from the collection was reviewed by the archivist and reincorporated intellectually and physically into the appropriate series and/or subseries. An inventory was created for Series V and an existing inventory of Series VI was updated.
Material was rehoused in acid-free folders and boxes. Interleaving paper was placed between newspaper clippings and other papers. Thermal fax paper was photocopied to preserve fading information on the paper.
Some material in Series III was determined to be protected under attorney work-product doctrine. This was removed from the collection and returned to the donor in June 2017.
Two floppy disks were forensically imaged and the files were transferred into New York University storage. One 8GB flash drive containing two video files was included in the collection but is damaged and inaccessible. New York University Libraries follow professional standards and best practices when imaging, ingesting, and processing born-digital material in order to maintain the integrity of the content.
In October 2017, material was sent to the Tamiment Library from the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU that was not included in the original shipment of material. This material was integrated into the collection were appropriate.
In 2018, accretions to the collection were received. These materials were rehoused in archival boxes and folders, and described as part of Series VII. 2018 Accretions.
In 2023, an accretion was received, rehoused, and intellectually incorporated into the collection in Series I.E, IV, and VI. One optical disc was imaged, analyzed, and described.