Generation Zombie

Essays on the Living Dead in Modern Culture


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SKU: 9780786461400 Categories: , , , ,

About the Book

Growing from their early roots in Caribbean voodoo to their popularity today, zombies are epidemic. Their presence is pervasive, whether they are found in video games, street signs, hard drives, or even international politics. These eighteen original essays by an interdisciplinary group of scholars examine how the zombie has evolved over time, its continually evolving manifestations in popular culture, and the unpredictable effects the zombie has had on late modernity. Topics covered include representations of zombies in films, the zombie as environmental critique, its role in mass psychology and how issues of race, class and gender are expressed through zombie narratives. Collectively, the work enhances our understanding of the popularity and purposes of horror in the modern era. Instructors considering this book for use in a course may request an examination copy here.

About the Author(s)

Stephanie Boluk is an assistant professor in Cinema and Digital Media and the English Department at University of California, Davis. She lives in Oakland, California.

Wylie Lenz is an assistant professor of English in the humanities and social sciences department at Florida Polytechnic University in Lakeland, Florida.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Stephanie Boluk and Wylie Lenz

Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 268
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2011
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6140-0
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8673-1
Imprint: McFarland
Series: Contributions to Zombie Studies

Table of Contents

Introduction: Generation Z, the Age of Apocalypse
(Stephanie Boluk and Wylie Lenz)      1

Zombies as Internal Fear or Threat
(Kim Paffenroth)      18
White Zombie and the Creole: William Seabrook’s The Magic Island and American Imperialism in Haiti
(Gyllian Phillips)      27
The Origin of the Zombie in American Radio and Film: B- Horror, U.S. Empire, and the Politics of Disavowal
(Chris Vials)      41
The Eco-Zombie: Environmental Critique in Zombie Fiction
(Sarah Juliet Lauro)      54
Lost Bodies/Lost Souls: Night of the Living Dead and Deathdream as Vietnam Narrative
(Karen Randell)      67
Shambling Towards Mount Improbable to Be Born: American Evolutionary Anxiety and the Hopeful Monsters of Matheson’s I Am Legend and Romero’s Dead Films
(Sean Moreland)      77
Ztopia: Lessons in Post- Vital Politics in George Romero’s Zombie Films
(Tyson E. Lewis)      90
Soft Murders: Motion Pictures and Living Death in Diary of the Dead
(Randy Laist)      101
Mass Psychology and the Analysis of the Zombie: From Suggestion to Contagion
(Phillip Mahoney)      113
Gray Is the New Black: Race, Class, and Zombies
(Aalya Ahmad)      130
Cyberpunk and the Living Dead
(Andrea Austin)      147
The End Begins: John Wyndham’s Zombie Cozy
(Terry Harpold)      156
Zombies in a “Deep, Dark Ocean of History”: Danny Boyle’s Infected and John Wyndham’s Triffids as Metaphors of Postwar Britain
(Nicole LaRose)      165
Dead and Live Life: Zombies, Queers, and Online Sociality
(Shaka McGlotten)      182
The E-Dead: Zombies in the Digital Age
(Brendan Riley)      194
A Brain Is a Terrible Thing to Waste: Isolation U. and the Campus Zombie
(Brian Greenspan)      206
Rhetoric Goes Boom(er): Agency, Networks, and Zombies at Play
(Scott Reed)      219
The National Strategy for Zombie Containment: Myth Meets Activism in Post–9/11 America
(Christopher Zealand)      231

About the Contributors      249
Index      253

Book Reviews & Awards

“demonstrates that zombies, as a field, has the heft to sustain serious academic inquiry…contributes to the field because it links zombies to some of the foundational questions of modernity and specifically the instability of many modernity’s assumptions…a fun and engaging critical field to a casual reader or students of cultural studies…many of these essays make important claims…Zombie experts should take note…. most interesting…This collection provides a range of exciting lines of flight and ample evidence that zombies are, and have long been, an important trope in the articulation of anxieties related to our globalist future.”—Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts; “zombies have come to stand for everything from conformity and consumerism to dangerous science and the military industrial complex… fertile ground here for those of us who like to deconstruct pop-culture and seek out all the hidden undercurrents…extremely literary essays that investigate a series of thought provoking topics…very interesting…fascinating…extremely engaging and thought provoking”—Bricks of the Dead; “collects some academic perspectives on z-horror, including zombie origins, environmental contagion, living-dead crowd psychology, and zombies on campus”—C&RL News; “presents 16 essays that examine the zombie’s evolution, continually evolving manifestations in popular culture and effects on modernity. Topics include the zombie in film, zombie as environmental critique and issues of race, class and gender”—CBQ.