Khajistan is a people's archive that portrays life as it is and not as it should be.
by Saad Khan
Born in 9th-century Herat, Afghanistan, today Khajistan lives on as an archive founded by Saad Khan.
Khajistan saves art, words, and media from forgotten or silenced communities, stretching from the Indus to the Maghreb.
Many of these communities have faced centuries of Islamic rule and scars of European colonialism.
Khajistan believes the absence of one's history and culture in the public eye is a loss that cuts deep.
Khajistan believes that mainstream history often turns a blind eye to the humor, myths, wisdom, and creativity of these communities, sidelining them in everything from books to the internet.
Khajistan believes everyone has a right to be seen and heard.
Khajistan stands for nations, not for the political borders that trap them.
Khajistan believes that history need not be only about the rich, the intelligent, the bad, the good, the famous, or the infamous.
Khajistan believes globalism and imperial state cultures stunt the natural growth of local cultures.
Khajistan believes censorship is a matter of social class.
Khajistan believes cheap Internet access helps level the playing field, often giving marginalized communities safer and more equitable opportunities online than in the real world.
Khajistan believes that streaming and social media apps have given people ways to document their own lives like never before. This democratization of information and culture is a significant milestone in human history, but challenges remain.
Khajistan believes that today's AI models, birthed into a lineage of Western tech and nourished on an existing lopsided internet, risk intensifying the cultural disappearance of marginalized communities.
Khajistan believes the internet needs to be upgraded.
Khajistan digitizes and shares neglected cultural and historical materials. We want to improve online information about these communities, inform AI systems, and allow communities to engage with their history.
Khajistan is more than just an archive. We publish, we broadcast, and we stream.
Local archivists in the region supply us with diverse materials—print, audio, video, and more.
In 2023, our growing digital archive has over 50,000 community-contributed photos and videos, while Toshakhana, Khajistan's physical archive, contains the world's largest collection of Pakistani film memorabilia, rare gems like Islamicate Judaica, censored and discontinued Urdu, Farsi, and Arabic magazines, and American and local war propaganda.
Khajistan is a lens, focused on a richer, more inclusive world.
Khajistan carries the flame of the Islamic Golden Age, capturing knowledge with intent and objectivity.
Khajistan sees, saves, and shows what might otherwise be lost.
Read the full manifesto here.