Acres of Skin

Medical Abuse Behind Bars
Films Media Group
Allen M. Hornblum
Monday, July 4, 2005
Type: 
documentary

Drawing comparisons to the Tuskegee syphilis atrocities, this program describes experiments performed at Philadelphia's Holmesburg Prison over a period of decades, during which inmates were subjected to frequently dangerous medical procedures without their informed consent. The video explores connections between major pharmaceutical companies, an indigent and semi-literate prison population, and an ambitious dermatologist named Dr. Albert Kligman who organized and conducted tests involving nerve damage, unnecessary skin grafts, and drug-induced psychoses. The result is a provocative look at disturbing aspects of America's penal system.

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