By Julia Greenberg, CNN
(CNN) - Legendary restaurateur Sylvia Woods, known internationally as the Queen of Soul Food, passed away on Thursday, according to a statement issued by her family. She was 86.
“Sylvia gallantly battled Alzheimer's for the past several years, but never once lost her loving smile,” her family said. She died peacefully surrounded by loved ones at her Westchester home.
Woods’ world-renowned Harlem establishment, Sylvia’s, has drawn celebrities, politicians, tourists and locals alike to eat its famed soul food for more than 50 years.
A secret supper in Harlem
Woods and her husband, Herbert, opened the Lenox Avenue restaurant in 1962, featuring southern cooking staples like cornbread, collard greens, and fried chicken.
“We lost a legend today,” New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg said in a statement. “For more than 50 years, New Yorkers have enjoyed Sylvia’s and visitors have flocked to Harlem to get a table. In her words, the food was made with ‘a whole lot of love’ and generations of family and friends have come together at what became a New York institution.”
Read the full post on CNN's Eatocracy blog
By Casey Wian and Michael Martinez, CNN
Phoenix (CNN) - Attorneys gave opening statements Thursday in a civil trial accusing an Arizona sheriff - who bills himself as "America's toughest" - and his department of racial discrimination against Latinos.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona and other attorneys are representing Hispanics in a class-action lawsuit accusing Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio of civil rights and constitutional violations. The bench trial is being held in the U.S. District Court in Phoenix.
In his opening remarks, Stanley Young, an attorney for the plaintiffs, told the judge that Arpaio and his department violated "the fundamental value of equal protection under the law" through a "policy of racial discrimination and mistreatment of Hispanics."
Tim Casey, an attorney for the sheriff, told the court that "there is no evidence that race or ethnicity played a factor" in the detention of the five named plaintiffs.
"Ethnic constituency of the neighborhood plays no role" in the Maricopa County Sheriff's Department's selection of neighborhoods for saturation patrols, Casey said in court.
Arpaio is expected to appear in court to testify early next week.
Read the full post
By Harmeet Shah Singh, CNN
New Delhi (CNN) - The Indian actor Rajesh Khanna, who became the first Bollywood superstar, died Wednesday in Mumbai at the age of 69, his family said.
The death of Khanna, who starred in dozens of movies in a career spanning five decades, prompted tributes from fellow actors and the Indian government.
"He was called the first superstar of the Indian cinema and his popularity as a romantic hero in the 1960s and 1970s is a part of our film folklore," Prime Minister Manmohan Singh wrote in a condolence message to Khanna's family.
"Rajesh Khanna taught us how to smile. He added dignity to our concept of romance," the actor Anupam Kher said in a message posted on his Twitter feed. "His songs made us forget our daily struggles of life."
Khanna had been in and out of the hospital during the past few months, but the nature of his illness and cause of death have not been officially disclosed.
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By Emanuella Grinberg, CNN
(CNN) - Depending who you ask, Yahoo's decision to hire Marissa Mayer several months into her pregnancy is either a boon to all working mothers or a misstep for the ailing tech company.
"Talk about lousy timing. She'll be taking maternity leave when she needs to be at work. Yahoo has enough problems without a part-time CEO," one commenter said in response to the Fortune article announcing news of her pregnancy.
Opinion: What signal is Marissa Mayer giving to Yahoo employees?
"It is quite possible that she can do both effectively, but it is not un-'evolved' to express concern," another said, referring to Mayer's comment that Yahoo's directors demonstrated "evolved thinking" in choosing to hire a pregnant chief executive.
"As a Yahoo shareholder, I am very concerned and have every reason to be."
It's possible that Mayer anticipated these reactions when she revealed her plan to work during her maternity leave so she could "stay in the rhythm of things." Her announcement reignited an already hot debate over whether women can "have it all" and how family leave policies make it hard to juggle a successful career and family.
Opinion: No one at the top gets to have it all
But Mayer isn't your typical working mother, and some believe her experience reflects the extreme demands that corporate America places on men and women alike and how that translates to national policy.
By Diego Laje and Corinna Liu, CNN
Hong Kong (CNN) - Aspiring Hong Kong musician Annabelle Cheng wants to be in America.
"I think (Hong Kong) is a city that can be defined by business," said Cheng, who recently graduated from Baptist University in Hong Kong with a degree in religion and philosophy. "But the cost of living in a dynamic city is that you don't have your personal space."
Asian population booming throughout U.S.
Living conditions in this crowded and hectic enclave are part of the reason Cheng wants to relocate to the U.S. "I really need that amount of time and space to think, to meditate, to get inspiration," said Cheng, who plans to save and apply for a post-graduate music program in the U.S. in two years.
Cheng isn't alone. Despite the rising fortunes of Asia, the Pew Center released a report last month that shows Asians have surpassed Latinos as the largest group of immigrants to the United States.
And university is often a gateway to residency: around half of Asian immigrants have a bachelor's degree or higher, compared to 13% of Hispanics, according to the report.
What defines you? Maybe it’s the shade of your skin, the place you grew up, the accent in your words, the make up of your family, the gender you were born with, the intimate relationships you chose to have or your generation? As the American identity changes we will be there to report it. In America is a venue for creative and timely sharing of news that explores who we are. Reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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