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Broken Heart Land to screen Nov. 11

The University of North Texas’ LGBT Studies program and the Center for Psychosocial Health Research will host a screening of “Broken Heart Land,” a documentary about Zach Harrington, a gay man who contracted HIV and committed suicide. The screening will take place at 7 p.m. Nov. 11 in Room 184 of the Radio Television, Film and Performing Arts Building.

The film explores the response of friends, family and community members to Harrington’s suicide in 2010. Harrington lived in Norman, Okla. a town divided on the issue of homosexuality. The documentary witnesses his parents as they reconcile their own social and political beliefs with their son’s death.

Mark Vosvick“This documentary addresses an issue that is very topical for many families in North Texas,” Mark Vosvick, right, co-director of UNT’s LGBT Studies Program, said. “The young man had parents who are conservative, religious and Republican. He struggles with coming out to his family. He also struggles with another secret — that he is HIV-positive.” 

The film highlights the need for community acceptance and support and gives special emphasis to how critical open dialogue in communities and families can be to one’s survival.

The 80-minute film will be followed by a panel discussion featuring Harrington’s parents in person, and the director of the film, Jeremy Stulberg, via Skype from New York City. Dr. Enedelia Sauceda, a psychologist from UNT’s Counseling Center staff and facilitator of a LGBT group at UNT, will also be on the panel.

“We hope that the discussion after the movie will enhance the audience’s interaction with the documentary by processing their feelings and thoughts about the young man’s suicide,” Vosvick said.

A trailer of the film can be viewed here.

Posted on: Fri 07 November 2014

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