At some point we made the transition from the supernatural to the hypersomatic. The advent of the modern zombie marks this: no longer animated by black magic, Romero’s “Living Dead” were hypothesized as having been caused by an asteroid- that is: by science.
It wouldn’t be particularly revelatory to notice the adjoining shift in anxieties: we don’t worry about souls anymore, we worry about bodies: social pandemics that can only be global (which is why we can at least pretend that it’s okay to say “we.”) It’s this anxiety- this not knowing what to do with “what it means to be human” (see: post/ humanism)- and how it affects our politics (see “All Lives Matter”) that pushes all of our stories- and everything that is at stake therein- to hyperbole. The irony, then, would be the ways in which it renders us unable to apprehend and articulate the myriad minute ways in which we- our bodies- are pathologized, regulated, herded (see: Walking Dead, Season 6, Episode 1).
In waiting rooms, the bursars office, the doctor’s office, office hours, at front desks, before the tribunals of middle-management, in emergency rooms, at borders, in refugee camps, in fellowship application after fellowship application, at social services, and on and on, we are processed, micro-managed, and nickled-and-dimed, just waiting for the right set of conditions to wander out of the quarry.
I propose, then, that it is ethically, aesthetically and politically imperative that we bring back the ghosts and the vampires, the spirits and the devils. Bring back the devils and haunt that shit.