They grace the covers of magazines. They star in a hit television series. And, they are featured in a popular new game on campus. Although from the world of the undead, zombies have certainly been enjoying their new star status. Now, there’s another venue to celebrate them—“Undead U: A Zombie Symposium,” set for 7-9 p.m., Friday, Nov. 1, on the campus of Michigan Technological University.
Presenter Adam Feltz, of Michigan Tech’s cognitive and learning sciences department, will combine psychology and philosophy in an analysis of why zombies are so appealing.
Read more at Michigan Tech News, by Dennis Walikainen.
A night for the living dead
Michigan Tech holds ‘Zombie U’ symposium
Adam Feltz from the department of cognitive and learning sciences at Michigan Tech led the symposium with an analysis of why we are so fascinated with zombies. To answer that question, Feltz looked to existing theories first. Those theories include the Stephen King theory, which poses the idea that our fascination with zombies reflects modern consumerism, and the war and atrocity theory, in which we like zombies more during times of hardship. Feltz dismissed those theories by simply tracking zombie movies made during those times and finding either no relationship or an inverse relationship with those trends.
So he went on to survey over 150 people and try to find common indicators that would predict who would like zombies. He found that people who like zombies are more likely to be male, to be young, to be less educated and to be liberal. But, of course, many people outside of those parameters also enjoy zombies.
“Why do we like zombies? It’s complicated because there is no ‘we.’ There are some people who like zombies and some people who don’t like zombies,” Feltz said.
Read more at the Mining Gazette, by Meagan Stilp.
Michigan Tech staff included in the talk will be Syd Johnson and Ketty Thomas of the Humanities and Adam Feltz of the Cognitive and Learning Sciences. From the University of Minnesota Duluth’s Department of Biology comes the special guest speaker, John Dahl.
Read more at the Michigan Tech Lode, by Sarah Harttung.