The Zombie


Pronunciation: zom-bee
Etymology: Of West African origin; compare Kongo nzambi god, zumbi fetish. Originally the name of a snake god, later meaning reanimated corpse in voodoo cult. Perhaps also deriving from Louisiana creole meaning phantom, ghost, from Spanish sombra(shade, ghost).

  1. The body of a dead person given the semblance of life, but mute and will-less, a supernatural force, usually for some evil purpose.

  2. The zombie is a gendered figure of the living dead, controlled by others and signaling violent histories of human bodies of African descent in colonialism and slavery, occupation and dictatorship, plus histories of such bodies in capitalist labor, with the zombie horde suggesting mindless masses rising up across all categories of identity and all areas of the world, especially in texts from the mid-twentieth century on. That which zombifies human bodies, infection or magic, threatens the inviolate humanity/animality of such bodies, producing a posthuman, even cyborg being never far, as an animate, anthropophagous corpse, from the abject.

Literature

This ongoing project is one in which zombie scholars and/or lovers of the zombie literature genre will be able to find, not only a comprehensive list of all fiction written about zombies, but also an updated bibliography on scholarship about these works and general theorization about the cultural importance of the zombie in our imaginary.

Film

This page is a site in which zombie scholars and/or lovers of the zombie film genre (from high-art viewers to the lover of the B-movie) will be able to find not only a comprehensive list of all films surrounding the zombie, but also information on the film's plot, actors, film-trivia, and a comprehensive and growing bibliography on scholarly work surrounding each film.

Visual Art

A comprehensive source for lovers of the zombie and its manifestations in various forms of Visual Art: painting, sculpture, cultural events.

Tools & Resources

This page will provide a look at all the Twitter activity surrounding the zombie: general cultural usage, film, literature, and television. See what has been said about AMC's The Walking Dead; who uses the term "zombie" and in what context; the novel and film World War; the term "Living Dead" and the film Night of the Living Dead; when and where are these tweets emenating and in what context.

This page will provide an in-depth look at the movement of zombies or their accompanying protagonists in multiple novels such as Colson Whitehead's Zone One and Alejandro Brugues's Juan de los muertos. These maps will allow us to think about zombies and their relations to space, the city, the island, and their transnational and transtemporal movement.