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The Coming Apocalypses of Zombies and Globalization

  • David A. Reilly
Chapter
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Abstract

The zombie genre has exploded into pop culture. But what is the attraction? What do zombies represent and why have they captured our interest? This chapter explores some of the answers and offers a novel hypothesis: in both the zombie apocalypse and the destructive path of globalization, individuals are empowered as states fail. Globalization has been described as a “Coming Anarchy” of fragmentation and homogenization that creates a sense of despair and powerlessness not unlike the onslaught of zombie hordes. Despite this, through an analysis of the diffusion process of zombification, this chapter argues that the common theme in both globalization and zombification is that the individual is empowered as the state collapses.

Keywords

Potential Victim Emperor Penguin Bubonic Plague Witch Doctor Impending Doom 
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Notes

  1. 20.
    This idea, according to Bill Wasik and Monica Murphy, made the rounds during the 2008 presidential campaign in the United States... that zombie booms correlated with Republican rule. Romero, after all, had reinvented the genre in the early days of Nixon, and then the Reagan administration ushered in a new wave that included Re-Animator and The Evil Dead. In Democratic-leaning times, when (so the theory ran) popular rhetoric tends to demonize blood-sucking plutocrats, the Byronic vampire will find himself ascendant; in conservative periods, by contrast, the fear is heaped on mobs of shadowy masses—whether they be criminals or welfare recipients or Muslims—and so zombies naturally rise again to become the undead bugbear of choice. See Bill Wasik and Monica Murphy, Rabid: A Cultural History of the World’s Most Diabolical Virus (New York: Penguin Books, 2012), 161.Google Scholar
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Copyright information

© David R. Castillo, David Schmid, David A. Reilly and John Edgar Browning 2016

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  • David A. Reilly

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