Dystopian narratives and humanism. What a zombie makeover really looks like

  • Author(s): Jordan Ryan Goings
  • When: 2015-03
  • Where: Caesura: Journal of Philological and Humanistic Studies
  • This paper involves an analysis of the zombie narrative sub-genre and its engagement with the philosophical paradigm of humanism. The goal is to show that contemporary zombie narratives disagree with the validity of humanism as valid prescription of anthropological ethics. This has been accomplished by examining recent works in psychological, theological, philosophical, and aesthetic studies on the literary theory of the zombie sub-genre. Upon such examinations, it is made apparent that this sub-genre offers an ontological commentary on the state of man that is in stark contrast to humanism’s portrayal of man’s goodness. Subsequently, this project discloses the paradigmatic differences between some zombie narratives and humanism; the former convey mankind as depraved, in a way commensurate with the Christian worldview, while the latter highlights man’s self sufficiency regarding his volitional desire to correct the dystopian context in which he would be placed. Through analyzing the anthropological implications within zombie narratives, this research will highlight the philosophical value of that sub-genre, as well as use this specific dystopian medium to communicate that humanism as an inefficient paradigm for helping man thrive in an apocalyptic zombie narrative.

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