- UNITED SIKHS carried out Sikh Awareness Through Libraries (SATL) Project to the main Rutgers University Academic Library in New Brunswick, New Jersey
- Books offering the Sikh perspective in the academic field from various accomplished Sikh authors, intellectuals, theologians, human rights activists, and historians now available in the Rutgers University Library Catalog
- Head Librarian at Rutgers University Libraries, Rutgers Sikh students, and wider Sikh community in New Jersey appreciate the project and the initiative
- The project hopes to expand with community support and donations
New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA – The Rutgers University Library received many new books from UNITED SIKHS on various topics and issues related to academics and research.
The UNITED SIKHS recommended list of Sikh books offers a great variety of crucial topics which are necessary for students in the academic field who are studying Sikhs. The books not only share Sikh ideals but show a larger context to reflect the ever increasingly multicultural world we live in.The “recommended titles” offers the Sikh perspective in an structured manner, starting from “religion and theology” as understanding theology first is crucial to understanding Sikh history. Rutgers University has shelved the books in the reading room for readers.
The set of books also includes books on Sikh History, and other crucial topics such as Sikhs in the Diaspora, Sikh Culture & Heritage, Human Rights issues faced by the Sikhs, Dictionaries and Encyclopedia for Sikh Studies, Writings on Sikh scriptural texts, and even Fiction by Sikh writers. The list included accomplished authors, intellectuals, theologians, human rights activists, and historians such as Professor Puran Singh, Sirdar Kapur Singh, Daljeet Singh, Harbans Singh, Patwant Singh, Cynthia Keppley Mahmood, Dr. Trilochan Singh, and Bhai Vir Singh, to name a few.
“It was great to see many new renowned books at the Rutgers Library by the same authors who are included in the UNITED SIKHS book list. I hope that more books would be placed on the shelves by UNITED SIKHS which would offer the Sikh perspective within the academic field,” said Amitoj Singh, a recent Rutgers University graduate.
As the “Interim Associate University Librarian for Collection Development and Management” or Head Librarian at the Rutgers University Libraries, Dr. Thomas M. Izbicki was very thankful for the books and immediately included them in the Rutgers University Library Catalog, after approving.
“This will improve our representation of the Sikh community in the library collection,” said Dr. Izbicki on receiving the books.
As an academic library, the main library on the College Avenue Campus at Rutgers known as the “Alexander Library” allows students to do their own research as a supplement to courses taken. With courses on various religions offered at Rutgers University, the Sikh religion or classes on “Sikhism” still have a long way to go before they are taught at Universities across the country.
Dr. Satbir Kaur, an active member of the Sikh community in New Jersey applauded the initiative and hopes this marks the beginning of a great partnership between UNITED SIKHS and the Rutgers University library in building a rich and diverse representation of the Sikh community in the library collection.
Rashmeen Kaur, of the Rutgers University Sikh Student Association commented on the project saying, “ The placement of these books will help provide access to an accurate set of books on Sikhism and will help bring awareness among Sikh and non-Sikh students at Rutgers University. This endeavor is an initial step in incorporating Sikh literature and I hope that more such books will be added to the library collection.”
This project would hopefully encourage other such steps to be taken at other Universities and academic libraries throughout the country.
National Director, Community Empowerment & Education (CEED)