James Berger Zombies And The End Of Society Analysis

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James Berger is a senior lecturer for American and English Studies at Yale University (Berger). His article “Zombies and the End of Society” contains three sections, namely 'Where are the Dead?', 'Revelations and Deferrals', and 'Zombies and the End of Society'. The last one, which also gave the article its name, is the most important one for this paper, since its arguments and claims concern the justification of violence in zombie movies. In the following, Berger's argumentation will be summarized and explained, to entirely understand his approach and use it to analyze the movie examples in sections 3.1., 3.2., and 3.3. In the section 'Zombies and the End of Society', Berger asserts that “[i]n most contemporary apocalyptic scenarios, the apocalyptic event itself is a pretext for the social breakdown that follows” (Berger). In the movies, the apocalyptic event mentioned here, is the infection of humans by viruses or other substances, that cause people to start feeding on human flesh and make them aggressive, mindless killers, which ultimately leads to the social breakdown. More people get infected, scientists as well as politicians, so the search for a cure becomes impossible and the government can grant no security anymore. According to Elizabeth McAlister “[...] the American zombie is almost always a sign and a symptom of an apocalyptic undoing of the social…show more content…
He cites ideas by other theorists, e.g. Anna Froula, which concern that argument. Elizabeth McAlister has the same claim of a connection between capitalism and zombies: “[…] the zombie serves to index the excessive extremes of capitalism, the overlap of capitalism and cannibalism, and the interplay between capitalism and race in the history of the Americas” (462). Yet, to prove the thesis of this paper, the economic factors are less important and will therefore not be examined further at this

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