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Icarus Film
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From the Fanlight Collection
The Angry Heart: The Impact of Racism on Heart Disease Among African Americans
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African-Americans die from heart disease at rates which are disproportionately higher than those of white Americans. Yet, while it is hard to find an African-American family whose lives have not been touched by heart disease, the American Heart Association reports that many in this community are painfully unaware of the scope of the problem.

The Angry Heart spotlights this modern epidemic through the story of 45-year-old Keith Hartgrove, who has already experienced two heart attacks and quadruple bypass surgery. Together with the experts who are interviewed in this important new documentary, he analyzes the impact of a wide variety of factors including depression, stress, diet, smoking and other lifestyle issues, but makes clear that, for African-Americans, such factors are inseparable from racism, and from the discrimination, poverty, segregation, substandard education, and day-to-day tensions which racism engenders.

Equally important to Hartgrove's story, however, are the powerful family, church and community ties which have supported him through his recovery.

"From leading researchers, the viewer gains an understanding of how racism and discrimination pervade the lives of African-Americans and other minorities in the United States. Heartwarming, compelling and informative, the powerful and moving ending emphasizes the need for films such as this to be included in cultural competence courses for professionals in the fields of healthcare, education, and human services." —Clifford L. Broman, PhD, Michigan State University for Ethnicity and Disease

"Skillfully breaks the issue of racism into understandable parts and illustrates how they affect the health and health care of African Americans. Like a good novel, it marries facts and emotion to create a connection with the viewer that touches the brain and the heart. Well balanced, with touching narration. It should be required viewing in medical schools and all health sciences educational programs. Highly recommended." —MC Journal

Best Documentary, New Hampshire Film Expo
International Health and Medical Film Competition
Society of Thorasic Surgeons
  

57 minutes / color
Release: 2001
Copyright: 2001
Sale: $248

Subject areas:
Chronic Illness / Heart Disease, Cross-Cultural Issues, Fanlight Collection, Health Care Issues, Healthcare History & Policy

Related Titles:
Worlds Apart: A series on cross-cultural healthcare. Four films raise awareness about how cultural barriers affect patient-provider communication and other aspects of care for patients of diverse backgrounds.

The Culture of Emotions: Designed to introduce cultural competence and diversity skills to mental/behavioral health professionals and students who deal with multi-cultural client populations.

Hold Your Breath: A devout Muslim immigrant faces possible death from stomach cancer but cultural and linguistic confusions complicate his treatment in an American hospital.

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Last Updated August 17, 2015
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