THE Divide, a documentary inspired by the book The Spirit Level by University of York academics Kate Pickett and Richard Wilkinson, will be shown at City Screen, York, on Tuesday.

Professor Wilkinson, honorary visiting professor in the department of health sciences, will take part in a question-and-answer session after the 6.30pm screening of Katharine Round's film, which highlights the human cost behind economic inequality.

Her film exposes the widespread effects of increased inequality through the stories of seven individuals striving for a better life in Great Britain and the United States, each illustrating how economic shifts have an impact on their experiences and psychology.

In The Spirit Level: Why More Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better, published by Penguin in 2009, the York authors show that many modern health and social problems, from drugs and violence to obesity and long working hours, are more likely to occur in a less equal society.

The book, chosen as one of the Top Ten Books of the Decade by the New Statesman and winner of Publication of the Year by the Political Studies Association, has been translated into 23 languages.

Kate Pickett, professor of epidemiology in the health sciences department, is the University of York research champion for justice and equality. “It’s vital to communicate important research evidence in ways that engage and interest people," she says. "We're delighted that Katharine Round has made a film inspired by our research that packs such a powerful emotional punch.”

The film will be shown on Tuesday at Picturehouse cinemas across the country under the Discover Tuesdays documentary banner, having had its world premiere at the Sheffield Doc/Fest 2015. Later it was nominated for Best UK Film at London’s Open City Documentary Festival 2015.

In her account of how inequality shapes our societies, Round's documentary unravels the mystery of why, despite increasing material wealth, social divisions and personal anxiety are increasing. Her narrative links people from around the world, including a busy Wall Street psychologist whose clients are battling breakdowns; a stressed fast-food worker, struggling to survive, and a low-income carer who feels looked down on.

Through the juxtaposition of real lives with archive footage and news reports, a picture emerges of the ways that economies profoundly influence our beliefs, self-image and actions.

Tickets for Tuesday's screening are on sale on 0871 902 5726 or at