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Leper: Life Beyond Stigma

Ellen Bruno; Bruno, Ellen; Kanopy (Firm)
Format
Video; Streaming Video; Online
Summary
This disease takes away the beauty of your face. It eats up your hands and feet and makes us ugly. Other diseases eat up your insides, but they leave you looking beautiful outside." "People in the villages think it is caused by Naga spirits. So they sacrifice chickens and goats and do prayer pujas. That's what they did for me too. My parents didn't know." Since antiquity, leprosy has struck fear into human beings. Seen as contagious, mutilating and incurable, leprosy continues to alienate those who contract it from their families and communities. Leper provides a rare and intimate glimpse into a contemporary society of lepers in a remote village in Nepal. Villagers speak openly and emotionally about their relationship to their sickness, to the "healthy" outside community outside the village boundaries, and the myriad stigmas and misunderstandings which surround a disease that has marked their bodies and their lives. The villagers speak eloquently of how, after much struggle and hardship, they build new lives for themselves, recreating family and community in the context of this disease. Their poignant and revealing stories offer heartfelt reflections on societal fears and aversions to sickness, bodily differences, and death.
Director
Ellen Bruno
Release Date
2005
Language
English
Notes
Title from title frames.
Published
[San Francisco, California, USA] : Kanopy Streaming, 2015.
Recording Info
Originally produced by BrunoFilms in 2005.
Publisher no.
1127906 Kanopy
Related Resources
Cover Image
Description
1 online resource (1 video file, approximately 23 minutes) : digital, .flv file, sound
Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Technical Details
  • Staff View

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    a| This disease takes away the beauty of your face. It eats up your hands and feet and makes us ugly. Other diseases eat up your insides, but they leave you looking beautiful outside." "People in the villages think it is caused by Naga spirits. So they sacrifice chickens and goats and do prayer pujas. That's what they did for me too. My parents didn't know." Since antiquity, leprosy has struck fear into human beings. Seen as contagious, mutilating and incurable, leprosy continues to alienate those who contract it from their families and communities. Leper provides a rare and intimate glimpse into a contemporary society of lepers in a remote village in Nepal. Villagers speak openly and emotionally about their relationship to their sickness, to the "healthy" outside community outside the village boundaries, and the myriad stigmas and misunderstandings which surround a disease that has marked their bodies and their lives. The villagers speak eloquently of how, after much struggle and hardship, they build new lives for themselves, recreating family and community in the context of this disease. Their poignant and revealing stories offer heartfelt reflections on societal fears and aversions to sickness, bodily differences, and death.
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