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The Self-Made Man (58 minutes)

The right-to-die debate goes West in this riveting portrait of a man and his family grappling with a darker side of rugged individualism. At 77, self-made man Bob Stern finds out that he is seriously ill and possibly terminal. In keeping with his independent spirit, Bob decides to cheat fate and take his own life. His family tries to stop him, but first they set up a video camera. Beautifully photographed and edited, this extraordinary drama unfolds in unexpected ways. The film offers an intimate exploration of nuclear family dynamics and a complex portrait of what is arguably a specifically American brand of hubris. While the right to life is enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, there is no parallel right to die. The film will be followed by a panel discussion featuring director Susan Stern.

This screening is co-sponsored by the Kenan Institute for Ethics.


March 16, 2010
7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
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Rare Book Room – Perkins Library
411 Chapel Drive
Durham, NC 27708 United States
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