Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Zombie Rights Movement!

So it's late, late on Halloween, all your charming neighborhood goblins have retreated to their lairs to count their treasures, you've put aside the balaclava you donned in honor of Pussy Riot and you're ready to get back to the 'real' world of serious human rights activism. May I suggest transitioning back with Amy Wilentz' great NYT op-ed "A Zombie is a Slave Forever," in which she explains how the zombie legend sprang from the institution of slavery and goes on to riff,
The zombie is devoid of consciousness and therefore unable to critique the system that has entrapped him. He’s labor without grievance. He works free and never goes on strike. You don’t have to feed him much. He’s a Foxconn worker in China; a maquiladora seamstress in Guatemala; a citizen of North Korea...
This zombie-slavery connection just has Doo-Dah parade entry written all over it. Zombie Rights Movement anyone?

We enjoyed Wilentz' novel Martyrs' Crossing and if this opinion piece is any indication, we could be very interested in her forthcoming book, Farewell, Fred Voodoo:
It was no surprise to Amy Wilentz when Haiti emerged from the dust of the 2010 earthquake like a powerful spirit. Her book is about magical transformations. It is filled with raucous characters: human-rights reporters gone awry, movie stars turned into aid workers, musicians running for president, doctors turned into diplomats, a former U.S. president working as a house builder, street boys morphing into rock stars, and voodoo priests running elections. 
Wilentz looks back and forward at the country: at its slave plantations, its unthinkable revolutionary history, its kick-up-the-dirt guerrilla movements, its troubled relationship to the U.S., the totalitarian dynasty that ruled for decades, as well as its creative culture, its ancient African traditions and attitudes, and its uncanny resilience. 
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