Documentary Filmmaker Byron Hurt to Screen ‘Soul Food Junkies’ at Holy Cross

Healthy soul food lunch will precede screening; community health discussion to follow

March 4th, 2013 by Kristine Maloney


Soul Food - An American Cuisine Image by Shawn Escoffery

Documentary filmmaker Byron Hurt will present his award-winning film “Soul Food Junkies” and participate in a panel discussion about healthy eating and food disparities on Monday, March 18 from 1 – 3 p.m. in the Hogan Campus Center Ballroom at the College of the Holy Cross. A healthy soul food luncheon, created by Boston chef Presceia Cooper and Holy Cross chef Edward Rome, will precede the screening and discussion from 12 – 1 p.m. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. Tickets are $25 per person. Tables of 10 may be purchased for $250. To reserve a seat, contact Robert Jones at rjone@holycross.edu or 508-793-2669 by March 15.

“Soul Food Junkies” explores the history and social significance of soul food to black cultural identity and its effect on African American health, good and bad. Winner of the Urbanworld Film Festival’s “Best Documentary” award and the American Black Film Festival’s “CNN Best Documentary Award,” investigates the dark side of the food industry and the growing food justice movement that has been born in its wake.

Inspired by his father’s unwillingness to give up his high-fat, calorie-laden traditional soul food diet, even in the face of a life-threatening health crisis, Hurt’s film includes candid interviews with soul food cooks, historians, and scholars, as well as doctors, family members, and everyday people to trace the tradition of “southern” food back to West Africa, and challenge society to change the profit-driven fast food and processed-food industry.

The screening will be followed by a panel discussion moderated by Robert Jones, associate director of the Office of Multicultural Education at Holy Cross, on healthy eating and food disparities as they relate to community and public health issues.

A healthy soul food-inspired luncheon of tomato and okra soup; black eyed peas and corn salad; brown rice and turkey sausage jumbalaya; blacked catfish, collard greens, roasted sweet potatoes, corn bread and fruit bread pudding will be served before the screening.

This program is supported by a grant from Fallon Community Health Plan; Holy Cross’ Office of Multicultural Education, Black Student Union, Student Government Association and the Caribbean and African Student Assemblage; the Massachusetts Association of Community Health Workers; and the Mosaic Cultural Complex.

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