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Since 1919, The New School has been home to scholars, creators, and activists who challenge convention and boldly make their mark on the world.
To celebrate this groundbreaking legacy, we are opening our doors to the public for a weeklong festival of innovative performances, talks, workshops, screenings, exhibitions, and more.

On October 1–6, 2019, join us as we reflect on a century of world-changing ideas and together imagine a new kind of future.

The Festival of New is free and open to all.
Wednesday, October 2 • 12:10pm - 2:50pm
Open Dis[Courses] - The Zombie: Living and Dead Labor in Modernity

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The zombie holds a unique place in the history of horror movies. This course explores the history, theory, and politics of the zombie from its origins in the folklore of the Caribbean to the memes and metaphors of the digital present, with the primary focus being on the evolution of the zombie movie over the course of the 20th century. The zombie illustrates racial conflicts, sexual anxieties, and theories of transgression. Scary, gross, and sometimes very funny, zombies manage to infect multiple genres (horror, romance, western, comedy) just as they shamble across national boundaries, while addressing modern societal concerns with conformity, crowds, colonialism, contagion, biotechnology, and terrorism through the mirror of popular media and culture, illustrating the global implications of these local politics. While the figure of the zombie emerged from the ethnography and folklore of the Caribbean and the American Deep South, it quickly gained traction on the silver screen, where it has held a prominent place ever since. However, the zombie has not remained a purely cinematic monster and has spread to television, video games, and other digital media as well, and in each case has served as a thought-provoking example of the cultural proclivities and anxieties of the era. This course will also address issues in race, labor, and value in which the zombie serves as a particularly good example of certain issues, dangers, and anxieties surrounding ethnicity and history, labor and economics, and popular culture.

Faculty Organizer
avatar for David Bering-Porter

David Bering-Porter

Assistant Professor of Culture and Media, Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts
David Bering-Porter is an assistant professor of culture and media at the Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts at The New School. He received his PhD in modern culture and media from Brown University in May 2011 and is currently pursuing an active teaching and research agenda.


Wednesday October 2, 2019 12:10pm - 2:50pm
B 258 65 W 11th St, New York, NY 10011