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A BRIEF HISTORY OF OUR
PEOPLE
Dr. Bea Dreadful
Oct. 30, 2015
St. Petersburg College
OUR ANCESTOR: THE REVENANT
Revenant: A dead body that could reanimate, leave the
grave, and harm the living (Geggel)
Earli...
ANCIENT GREECE
• Discovered in Kamarina, a Greek city-
state in southeastern Sicily (598
B.C.E. – mid-first century CE).
N...
MIDDLE AGES
• Revenants: Violent or unnatural death, death in
childbirth, lack of confession of sins,
possession by evil s...
MIDDLE AGES
• Goal: Get body to decay quickly
• England, France, Germany and the Low
Countries:
• Body tightly wrapped, se...
THE DANCING DEAD (DANSE MACABRE)
• Danse Macabre images manifested with the cemetery of the Innocents of Paris; popularize...
TODAY: WE STILL DANCE
Michael Jackson, “Thriller”; December 1983
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hG6oy46qKE4
1:43/ 2:31
EV...
MODERNITY: THE ZOMBIE
• Zombie: noun 1. the body of a dead
person given the semblance of life, but
mute and will-less, by ...
MODERNITY: ZOMBIES ARISE!
The Walking Dead, 2012
The Dawn of the Dead, 1978
Now they can’t get
enough of us!
Early modern:...
TODAY: OCT. 30, 2015
WE WANT YOU!
SOURCES
• Bynum, Caroline W. “Death and Resurrection in the Middle Ages: Some Modern Implications."
Proceedings of the Ame...
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A brief history of the zombie people

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A brief history of the zombie people

  1. 1. A BRIEF HISTORY OF OUR PEOPLE Dr. Bea Dreadful Oct. 30, 2015 St. Petersburg College
  2. 2. OUR ANCESTOR: THE REVENANT Revenant: A dead body that could reanimate, leave the grave, and harm the living (Geggel) Earliest known examples of graves containing revenants: 4500 – 3800 BCE, Cyprus; bodies found in graves with millstones across heads/chests to pin them down What made a revenant? Suicides; murder, drowning, plague victims, improper burial, people who were cursed, foreigners/outsiders, illegitimate/abnormal babies, babies born on inauspicious date
  3. 3. ANCIENT GREECE • Discovered in Kamarina, a Greek city- state in southeastern Sicily (598 B.C.E. – mid-first century CE). Necropolis: Passo Marinaro (5th to 3rd centuries B.C.) Two odd burials show how they stopped our ancestors: putting pottery and stones over the body to keep them in the grave. (Credit: Drawings by D. Weiss from G. Di Stefano's excavation journals.)
  4. 4. MIDDLE AGES • Revenants: Violent or unnatural death, death in childbirth, lack of confession of sins, possession by evil spirit, rampant sexuality, the non-baptised • Body might not expel all life energy at death; soul sent out for judgment • Spirits could slip into the corpse and then run amuck through the world of the living (Caciola 10, Finucane 57) • To stop them: Confession, holy relics, burial with spikes, beheading, burning the body
  5. 5. MIDDLE AGES • Goal: Get body to decay quickly • England, France, Germany and the Low Countries: • Body tightly wrapped, sewn into a shroud. • Acidic graveyard soil desired • If the ground was not suitable, a body might be boiled or dismembered as “scattering the limbs [would] prevent the possibility of revenants” (Caciola 34).
  6. 6. THE DANCING DEAD (DANSE MACABRE) • Danse Macabre images manifested with the cemetery of the Innocents of Paris; popularized, living and dead danced together
  7. 7. TODAY: WE STILL DANCE Michael Jackson, “Thriller”; December 1983 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hG6oy46qKE4 1:43/ 2:31 EVIL: Walt Disney, Skeleton Dance, 1929 • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h03QBNVwX8Q
  8. 8. MODERNITY: THE ZOMBIE • Zombie: noun 1. the body of a dead person given the semblance of life, but mute and will-less, by a supernatural force, usually for some evil purpose. • the supernatural force itself. (Dictionary.com) • The root of the word comes from the language of Kikongo from the African Congo. • First recorded as an English word (zombi) in 1819; History of Brazil by Robert Southey
  9. 9. MODERNITY: ZOMBIES ARISE! The Walking Dead, 2012 The Dawn of the Dead, 1978 Now they can’t get enough of us! Early modern: Night of the Living Dead (1968) – radioactive contamination; bites The Living Dead series (1978-2010) (social commentary, exaggeration) Shaun of the Dead (2004)(horror/comedy) Walking Dead, World War Z (TV) (mystery, disease, microbiological)
  10. 10. TODAY: OCT. 30, 2015 WE WANT YOU!
  11. 11. SOURCES • Bynum, Caroline W. “Death and Resurrection in the Middle Ages: Some Modern Implications." Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society. Vol. 142, 4. Dec. 1998: 589 – 590. JSTOR. Web. 25 Sept. 2014. • Caciola, Nancy. “Wraiths, Revenants and Ritual in Medieval Culture.” Past and Present Aug. 1996: 3 – 45. JSTOR. Web. 24 Sept. 2013. • Finucane, R.C. Ghosts: Appearances of the Dead and Cultural Transformation. New York: Prometheus Books, 1996. • Geggel, Laura. “Ancient Greek burials prepared for zombie uprising”. Livescience.com. June 25, 2015. Web.

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