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American Zombie Gothic: The Rise and Fall (and Rise) of the Walking Dead in Popular Culture

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Overview

Zombie stories are peculiarly American, as the creature was born in the New World and functions as a reminder of the atrocities of colonialism and slavery. The voodoo-based zombie films of the 1930s and '40s reveal deep-seated racist attitudes and imperialist paranoia, but the contagious, cannibalistic zombie horde invasion narrative established by George A. Romero has even greater singularity.

This book provides a cultural and critical analysis of the cinematic zombie ...

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American Zombie Gothic: The Rise and Fall (and Rise) of the Walking Dead in Popular Culture

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Overview

Zombie stories are peculiarly American, as the creature was born in the New World and functions as a reminder of the atrocities of colonialism and slavery. The voodoo-based zombie films of the 1930s and '40s reveal deep-seated racist attitudes and imperialist paranoia, but the contagious, cannibalistic zombie horde invasion narrative established by George A. Romero has even greater singularity.

This book provides a cultural and critical analysis of the cinematic zombie tradition, starting with its origins in Haitian folklore and tracking the development of the subgenre into the twenty-first century. Closely examining such influential works as Victor Halperin's White Zombie, Jacques Tourneur's I Walked with a Zombie, Lucio Fulci's Zombi 2, Dan O'Bannon's The Return of the Living Dead, Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later, and, of course, Romero's entire "Dead" series, it establishes the place of zombies in the Gothic tradition.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786448067
  • Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
  • Publication date: 1/26/2010
  • Series: Genre/Horror
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 247
  • Sales rank: 534,083
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Kyle William Bishop is an assistant professor at Southern Utah University, where he teaches American literature and culture, film studies, fantasy literature, and English composition. He has presented and published a variety of papers on popular culture and cinematic adaptation.

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Table of Contents

Foreword Jerrold E. Hogle Hogle, Jerrold E.

Introduction The Zombie Film and Its Cycles 9

1 Raising the Living Dead: The Folkloric and Ideological Origins of the Voodoo Zombie 37

2 The Return of the Native: Imperialist Hegemony and the Cinematic Voodoo Zombie 64

3 The Rise of the New Paradigm: Night of the Living Dead and the Zombie Invasion Narrative 94

4 The Dead Walk the Earth: The Triumph of the Zombie Social Metaphor in Damn of the Dead 129

5 Humanizing the Living Dead: The Evolution of the Zombie Protagonist 158

Conclusion The Future Shock of Zombie Cinema 197

Filmography 209

Chapter Notes 213

Bibliography 225

Index 231

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 20, 2012

    Utter tripe.... Same zombie criticism recycled from eighties...

    Utter tripe.... Same zombie criticism recycled from eighties.... Zombies represent capitalism.... Duh! Much better and more serious works out there.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 10, 2011

    Zombie Lover

    American Zombie Gothic: The Rise and Fall (and Rise) of the Walking Dead in Popular Culture. by Kyle William Bishop
    This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
    As a fan of the horror sub-genre of zombies I found this book both interesting and enlightening. First of all, Mr. Bishop's sources are well documented and from what I found, reliable. As a zombie fan they were also helpful. I was able to add other books and movies that I haven't read or watched or some I would like to revisit.
    Not many people that I know will watch a zombie movie and wonder why the fictional creature was invented or the deeper meaning behind zombies. Mr. Bishop takes the reader on a historical voyage of the zombies chronological existence beginning in the folklore of Haiti to modern day apocolyptic fears.
    This book goes deeper into zombies and their meaning to us than I expected. I found myself saying "oh okay' a lot and agreeing with his points. I recommend this book to anyone who likes zombie stories or even to someone with a zombie fear (looking at it from Mr. Bishop's point of view might just make you a fan.) review by shayrp

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 6, 2013

    Disapointed

    Damn it I thought american gothic was a band :(

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 27, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews

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