Zombology, the study of zombies
Zombology (from roots, "zomb", "zombie" + λόγος, "logos", "knowledge") is a branch of Natural Science, and the discipline which involves the study of zombies. The systematic exploration and tabulation of the facts involved in the recognition of all the recent and ancient kinds of zombies and their distribution throughout time.
What is a Zombie?
First to study zombies it is important to understand exactly what a zombie is. We need to differentiate between two common terms used for zombies; Undead and Zombie. First the definition of undead; according a combination of dictionary definitions (dictionary.com, Merrian and Websters):
un•dead ən-ded noun, adjective
1. no longer alive but animated by a supernatural force, as a vampire or zombie.
2. neither dead nor alive. living dead.
zom•bie also zom•bi zäm-bē noun
1 a: the supernatural power that according to voodoo belief may enter into and reanimate a dead body
2: a: person held to resemble the so-called walking dead; especially : automaton
3: a mixed drink made of several kinds of rum, liqueur, and fruit juice (we can rule this out it is not the type of zombie seen in this site)
It is clear that a zombie is one who has lost the ability of free will, resorting to primitive cognitive function and physically resembling dead or corpse like features. This is a good basic definition of what a zombie is; unfortunately it is a very broad one. This means there are many different forms of zombies. Check out Zombie Taxonomy subcategory for more details of types of zombies.
One thing that makes zombies different from other western mythology is the fact that they do not come from a European gothic tradition. Instead, the zombie story originates in Haiti. This is where West Africans were brought and traded as slaves to work on the sugar plantations. As a part of the voodoo religion, Haitians believe that magicians called bokors, or houngans, can revive the recently dead, turning them into mindless, soulless servants called zombies. Zombies remain under the control of the bokor since they have no will of their own. Believers in voodoo will guard the grave of deceased relatives until they are certain that it has begun to decay, for the magic only works on fresh bodies.
"Zombi" is also another name of the Voodoo snake god Damballah Wedo, There also exists within the voudon tradition the zombi astral which is a human soul that is captured by a bokor and used to enhance the bokor's power.
Modern zombies, as portrayed in books, films, games, and haunted attractions, are quite different from both voodoo zombies and those of folklore. Modern zombies are typically depicted in popular culture as mindless, unfeeling monsters with a hunger for human flesh.
Usually, zombies are not thralls to masters, modern zombies come in mobs and waves, seeking either flesh to eat or people to kill or infect. They are generally incapable of communication and show no signs of personality or rationality.
Modern zombies are closely tied to the idea of a Zombie Apocalypse the collapse of civilization caused by a vast plague of undead. The ideas are now so strongly linked that zombies are rarely depicted within any other context.
There are four subcategories within Zombology each focus on a specific area. Most people have a rough idea what a zombie is from watching movies or reading
. Zombie has a very general definition; there have been many different types of zombies throughout time.
is the classification of these different types of zombies.
Zombie taxonomy is the practice and science of zombie classification. Zombies are classified if a few different ways, first by their origin, and also by their physical and mental characteristics.
Zombie Apocalypse is the apocalyptic scenarios where man kind is wiped out by zombies. Where will you be when it happens? there are many different possible origins of this deadly event, this section previews some of these potential scenarios.
Zombie research is the science behind zombies, zombie existence could be closer than you think? This section is full of research articles and theories about the existence of real zombies.
Zombie survival is a strategy guide about surviving a zombie attack or zombie apocalypse. If the zombie apocalypse happened right now where will you be? Would you be prepared? This section gives advise about what to do so you will be.