Welcome to the Ten Nights of Halloween! Each day I'll introduce you to one of the characters in my picture book, Halloween Good Night.
Zombies, Zombies Everywhere?
Today is the fifth of the Ten Nights of Halloween! We started with one little Globster lurking in the swamp, and moved on to imps and werewolves and mummies, oh my! Now we look at one of my personal favorites, the zombie.
Night of the Living Dead was one of the first horror movies I ever saw. I must have been eight or nine, watching whatever black and white flick was featured in the Sunday afternoon "too bored to do anything else" time slot.
The cultural origin of zombies may surprise you. While there's mention dead rising up to eat the living as far back as the Epic of Gilgamesh (c. 2100 bc), stories much closer to our modern zombie emerged in Haiti during the 200+ year enslavement of Africans on the then-French-controlled island. Slaves in this area believed death would free them and return them to their homeland, but suicide would doom them to wander the plantations as soulless zombies. Voodoo then slightly altered the myth and enfolded it into the Voodoo religion.
The Atlantic has a superb article about zombie origins, ending with,
And now in pop culture, the zombie has come to serve as the primary symbol of escapism itself—where the fictional enslavement of some provides a perverse kind of freedom for everyone else.
A moving perspective that makes me think about Walking Dead, World War Z, and other modern expressions of zombies in a new way.
This Video Shows Some Amazing Zombie Makeup:
This video is a gory (because, zombie). But since it's makeup, it's clearly not real. Right? Or is it... Here's a little history lesson (also gory).
Our favorite Zombie crafts!
They're green, they're slimy, they're zombies! So, uh, ok, not really but it seems like crafts universally make zombies look a lot like the Plants Vs. variety. Which was one of my son's favorite games for a long, long time. Anyhow, here are some crafts!