The Year's Work at the Zombie Research Center

The Year's Work at the Zombie Research Center

The Year's Work at the Zombie Research Center

The Year's Work at the Zombie Research Center

Synopsis

They have stalked the horizons of our culture, wreaked havoc on moribund concepts of dead and not dead, threatened our sense of identity, and endangered our personal safety. Now zombies have emerged from the lurking shadows of society's fringes to wander the sacred halls of the academy, feasting on tender minds and hurling rot across our intellectual landscape. It is time to unite in common cause, to shore up defenses, firm up critical and analytical resources, and fortify crumbling lines of inquiry. Responding to this call, Brain Workers from the Zombie Research Center poke and prod the rotting corpus of zombie culture trying to make sense of cult classics and the unstoppable growth of new and even more disturbing work. They exhume "zombie theory" and decaying historical documents from America, Europe, and the Caribbean in order to unearth the zombie world and arm readers with the brain tools necessary for everyday survival. Readers will see that zombie culture today "lives" in shapes as mutable as a zombie horde--and is often just as violent.

Excerpt

EDWARD P. COMENTALE & AARON JAFFE

We’re sure you’ve noticed that zombies are everywhere these days. Why else would you be reading this book? As it says in the stairwell: THE END IS EXTREMELY FUCKING NIGH. [#zombies.] In the bunker, out on the rooftop, inside and out back, stalking the horizon, zombies pose significant threats to both human identity and human civilization. Who are they? What do they want? How do they “think”? What do they mean? The recent explosion of zombies in film, literature, graphic novels, video games, and fan culture is inescapable. Even sociology, philosophy, and literary theory have gotten into the zombie act, elaborating core concepts around borrowings from this undead corner of pop culture. But who has time to read a book—let alone a tome as hefty as The Year’s Work at the Zombie Research Center—during a zombie apocalypse? Perhaps you’re curious about your world. (A little late, no?) Perhaps you need a few tips. In this book we’ll look at zombie cult classics; historical documents from America, Europe, and the Caribbean; and some “zombie theory” by philosophers, sociologists, and literary theorists. We’ll also consult some of the more recent hits from the ever growing zombie corpus in order to explore the contemporary meanings of the zombie and the zombie world. At the Zombie Research Center we’ve grown desensitized to the groans and eye rolls that names like Freud, Derrida, or Lacan sometimes elicit. You should never feel stupid for ordering brains. As you’ll find, though, zombie culture today is as shapeless and mutable . . .

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