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James Bond and Capitalism Zombies – the Baron Samedi connection

November 9, 2012

Recall the week ZombieLaw was literally ‘under the weather’, the NYTimes posted “A Zombie Is a Slave Forever” by Amy Wilentz, explaining some of the Haitian voodoo history connecting zombies to capitalism, fascism and the sugar trade:

In traditional Voodoo belief, in order to get back to lan guinée, one must be transported there by Baron Samedi, the lord of the cemetery and one of the darkest and most complicated of the religion’s many complicated gods. Baron is customarily dressed in a business jacket, a top hat and dark glasses; he’s foul-mouthed and comic in a low, vicious way. One of Baron’s spiritual functions, his most important, is to dig a person’s grave and welcome him to the other side. If for some reason a person has thwarted or offended Baron, the god will not allow that person, upon his death, to reach guinée. Then you’re a zombie. Some other lucky mortal can control you, it is believed. You’ll do the bidding of your master without question.

Recall also that Baron Samedi is a James Bond villain, who appeared in “Live and Let Die” but perhaps more importantly appeared in the Goldeneye video game, one of the most successful video games of my generation and still perhaps one of my favorite games ever.

baron zamedi james bond baron samedi 007 godeneye

Recall Batman fights Zombies too — James Bond is a similar kind of elitist hero who skirts the edge of liberalism like a snail on a razor blade – but unlike Batman, Bond actually works for the government (except when he goes rogue) And I guess Batman sometimes work with the government as much as Bond does but still Bond is definitely more of a company man. He’s less batty-bat-shit-crazy too – but still he’s his own special kind of crazy.

Wilentz continues:

The only way for a zombie to have his will and soul return is for him to eat salt — a smart boss of a zombie keeps the creature’s food tasteless.

So salt your popcorn at the James Bond movies. And recall the cures for zombie condition:– puppies, laughter and a pinch of salt! … bath salt?

And you might think it tasteless but Wilentz stresses the Nazi zombie connection before concluding:

The zombie is devoid of consciousness and therefore unable to critique the system that has entrapped him. He’s labor without grievance. He works free and never goes on strike.

Sounds to me like a sort of postmodern proletariat, a sort of Americanized Frankfurt school. See also some of my more obscure zombielaw posts about French Theory (read with pinch of salt).

And see also this timely analysis of Hegel’s Master-Slave dialect vis-a-vis The Zombie Vampire Industrial Complex by Eliot Sperber.


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