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zombie science death drive

January 20, 2013

IowaStateDaily: “How to survive the zombie trend” by sophomore Hailey Gross concludes:

though you may be ready to discard the zombie theme entirely, try instead to separate the cliched from the original. The genre is still evolving, and once the surge of undead media slows down, you will be glad you were able to appreciate

Recall recent ZombieLaw post “Zombies cliché? derp!“. And remember WiredGeekDad Curtis Silver predicts zombies will jump the shark.

Zombies are more than mere characters from fantasy media like those listed in by Gross in her article (Harry Potter, Pride and Prejudice, Max Brooks). Zombies are of growing importance because they embody a variety of continuing cultural controversies: particularly mind-body problems of free will and human consciousness but also fear of death, memory, guilt and nostalgia. And also questions of new technology – machine consciousness and new neuroscience — all these make zombies more salient.

Forbes: “Scientifically Studying Real Life Zombies” by Alex Knapp about 1997 research from the Lancet republished by MindHacks: “A medical study of the Haitian zombie“:

The zombification process was made famous by anthropologist Wade Davis, who hypothesized that zombification is caused by a neurotoxin that can be found in local pufferfish.

At HuffPo: “The Zombies That Killed Apps and Created New Content” by Dave Standen writes:

It won’t be long before you’re surrounded by zombies. Everywhere you turn they’ll be there, determined in their efforts to get a piece of you.

Standen a “digital content creator” uses “zombies” here as a reference to a near-future world of embedded technology where smart devices are in constant wireless communication with an environment full of ‘just in time’ data for “augmented and annotated reality”.

The whole world becomes an annotated museum, see CultureBot: “Bringing Back the Dead” by George Grella, writing:

Museums are where dead things, whose predominate makers are themselves dead, go, to be admired by the living. Museums collect dead things and display them that’s the point of a museum

Dead things can speak to us — and now with help of programmed microprocessors –but also still sometimes from the spirits inherent in the art. Without that art, we are all but walking zombie – see The Salt Lake Tribune: ‘I was a walking zombie’ — a Utahn’s journey back to mental health by Cathy McKitrick

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