What is scarier than a dead body that moves? A key dynamic of the zombie genre is the ‘re-animation’ of lifeless corpses, granting movement where there should be none. At their inception, they are characterised by (unnatural) movement and (heightened) emotion. However, there is more to the zombie genre than it simply being frightening and gruesomely violent. Zombies, and more particularly the zombie apocalypse, are a backdrop and context for human drama. They allow a commentary on issues of consumerism, interpersonal cooperation and conflict, gender and race relations, highlighting that ‘Zombie films are about the humans. They [the humans] are the problem’.1 The mechanism by which they draw out these issues is by disorienting the audience through the depiction of extremes (violence and depravity such as cannibalism) and then reorienting audience experience through the narrative structure to make an ‘unsettling point, usually a sociological, anthropological, or theological one’ (Paffenroth, 2006, p. 2). We are less concerned with repeating these points than looking to extend beyond this content to grapple with wider conceptual issues. The zombie genre’s narrative energy is premised upon a ‘what if question, set in a fantasy world. In this sense such enquiries draw upon the concept of social-science fiction whereby fiction can encourage engagement of a non-sociologist with social-science themes and issues (Penfold-Mounce et al., 2011) through speculative ‘breeching’ (Garfinkel, 1967) or sociological provocation — in this case a playful evocation of ‘anti-structure’ (Turner, 1969).
Weitere Kapitel dieses Buchs durch Wischen aufrufen
Bitte loggen Sie sich ein, um Zugang zu diesem Inhalt zu erhalten
Sie möchten Zugang zu diesem Inhalt erhalten? Dann informieren Sie sich jetzt über unsere Produkte:
- Zombies and the Sociological Imagination: The Walking Dead as Social-Science Fiction
- Palgrave Macmillan UK