In an earlier post, I wrote about the intersections of gender, technology, and economy using Apple’s “personal assistant” Siri as an example. With the recent release of the Japanese version of Siri, I thought I would provide an update on the available languages and their use of a default masculine or feminine voice.


Below is Part 1 of a three part essay I will be presenting at the 2012 Southwest Texas Popular Culture Association meetings in Albuquerque, New Mexico on February 9th. I will be presenting alongside several other scholars for a series of panels titled “The Apocalypse in Popular Culture.” A (much) earlier version of this paper can be found on the Sociological Images sister blog. Part 1 discusses the first wave of zombie cinema 1920-1950s.

The Zombie in Film: From Haitian Folklore to Apocalyptic Anxieties

If you are alive these days, and not already part of the undead masses yourself, you probably have noticed a staggering increase of zombie references in film, television, pop culture, videogames and the internet.
For instance, the big screen and small screen have both hosted a plethora of zombie films including the more popular blockbusters 28 Days Later (2002), Shaun of the Dead (2004), and I Am Legend (2007). In television, we have seen the recent success of AMC’s The Walking Dead, based on the comic book series of the same name. In pop culture, we have seen the viral video of penitentiary inmates dancing to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” and even the popular television sitcom Glee host its own rendition of the dance. And if you are on a college campus like myself, you have probably seen undergraduates playing “Zombies Vs. Humans,” a game of tag in which “human” players must defend against the horde of “zombie” players by “stunning” them with Nerf weapons and tube socks. In videogames, we have seen the success of the Resident Evil franchise, eventually culminating in a series of films staring Mila Jovovich, as well as more recent games like Left 4 Dead and Dead Rising. Finally, the internet is awash with zombie culture. From post-apocalyptic zombie societies to zombie fansites and blogs.
The Annual "Zombie Walk" in Pittsburgh, PA, birthplace of the famed zombie director George Romero.
But what is the zombie and where does it come from? more...

all photos in this post by nathan jurgenson

This is a disorganized photo essay with my photos and random ruminations from Occupy Congress last week.

Larger versions of these photos; am very happy to share them, just ask and/or credit me: