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Airs Monday, May 20, 2013 at 11 p.m. on KPBS TV

Soul food dinner being served.

Credit: Courtesy of Laylah Amatullah Barrayn

Above: Soul food dinner being served.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Rahoul Ghose/PBS

During PBS’ INDEPENDENT LENS “Soul Food Junkies” session at the TCA Summer Press Tour in Los Angeles, Calif. on Saturday, July 21, 2012, comedian and social activist Dick Gregory, series host Mary-Louise Parker, filmmaker Byron Hurt and series producer Lois Vossen discuss the soul-food tradition and its relevance to black cultural identity.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Laylah Amatullah Barrayn

Soul food on a plate including fried chicken, green beans and macaroni & cheese.

7 Healthy Soul Food Recipes

Soul food can be delicious and healthy, too! Here are seven delectable, healthy, soul-food-inspired recipes — good for body and soul.

This acclaimed Emmy Award-winning anthology series features documentaries and a limited number of fiction films united by the creative freedom, artistic achievement and unflinching visions of their independent producers. INDEPENDENT LENS features unforgettable stories about a unique individual, community or moment in history.

The series is supported by interactive companion Web sites and national publicity and community engagement campaigns. Acclaimed actor and filmmaker Stanley Tucci hosts the series.

"Soul Food Junkies" - Soul food is a quintessential American cuisine, with a rich history and an abiding significance for black cultural identity. But with its celebration of all things fried and smothered, it has also had lasting effects on the health of African Americans.

Join filmmaker Byron Hurt for a look at soul food: from its roots in Western Africa to its incarnation in the American South to its contribution to modern health crises in communities of color.

“Soul Food Junkies” also looks at the socioeconomics of the American diet, and how the food industry profits from making calories cheap, but healthy options expensive and hard to find.

"Soul Food Junkies" is on Facebook. Byron Hurt (Filmmaker, Activist, Writer) is on Facebook. INDEPENDENT LENS is on Facebook, and you can follow @IndependentLens on Twitter.

Trailer: Independent Lens: Soul Food Junkies

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Watch Is Soul Food a Sacrament or a Sin? on PBS. See more from Independent Lens.

Is Soul Food a Sacrament or a Sin? To many African Americans, soul food is sacrament, ritual, and a key expression of cultural identity. But does this traditional cuisine do more harm to health than it soothes the soul? Find out in "Soul Food Junkies" coming next season to INDEPENDENT LENS.

Soul Food: Good To You vs. Good For You

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Watch Soul Food: Good to You vs. Good for You on PBS. See more from Independent Lens.

In this excerpt from the Independent Lens documentary, "Soul Food Junkies," filmmaker Byron Hurt visits Jackson, Mississippi to learn more about soul food cooking and describes some of the health concerns related to traditional Southern cuisine.

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