Soul Food Junkies
In this PBS documentary, award-winning filmmaker Byron Hurt shares his journey to learn more about the African American cuisine known as soul food.
Baffled by his dad's unwillingness to change his traditional soul food diet in the face of a health crisis, Hurt sets out to learn more about this rich culinary tradition and its relevance to black cultural identity. He discovers that the love affair that his dad and his community have with soul food is deep-rooted, complex, and in some tragic cases, deadly. Through candid interviews with soul food cooks, historians, and scholars, as well as doctors, family members, and everyday people, Soul Food Junkies blends history, humor, and heartwarming stories to place this culinary tradition under the microscope.
Both the consequences and the benefits of soul food are carefully addressed. So too is the issue of low access to quality food in black communities, which makes it difficult for some black people to eat healthy. In the end, Hurt determines whether or not black people are addicted to this food tradition that has its origins in West Africa and the black south, yet is loved all over the world.
Byron Hurt is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, published writer, anti-sexism activist, and lecturer. Hurt is also the host of the Emmy-nominated series, Reel Works with Byron Hurt. The Independent named him one of the "Top 10 Filmmakers to Watch" in 2011. His most popular documentary, Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and was later broadcast on Independent Lens.
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