Zone One 's “mediocre” protagonist, Mark Spitz, is one of the civilian survivors responsible for clearing the Manhattan area of the remaining "stragglers," a strain of infectees that instead of turning into the typical flesh-eating zombie, roam around purposelessly in places that were once meaningful to them. As Mark Spitz is trying to survive and make sense of the uncanniness surrounding him, his introspective commentary on the world around him drops hints and nudges at subtle symbols that nod towards the obsolescence of the previously enforced social system. He references the bleakness of the capitalist businessman in the aftermath of these events, depicting it as a zombie wearing a dirty pinstripe suit. The businessman once representing the epitome of success in our society, now “its infection had converted this creature into a member of its bygone loser cadre, into another of the broke and the deluded, the mis-fitting, the inveterate u...
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...ead 's Zone One uses the zombie mythos and the social interaction between the zombies and the survivors as way to ponder on how a post-capitalist version of a western culture might look like. Whitehead 's novel goes above and beyond resisting the binary in this narrative, since he contemplates the roles of not only the oppressor-military-bourgeoisie and the oppressed-zombie-proletariat, but also of a more neutral group: the middle class-mediocre survivor. Analyzing the western socioeconomic structure through this lens, and inquiring about its possible evolution allows the individuals of said society to notice the flaws of a problematic, yet effective, system that keeps exploiting and oppressing the lower classes. These analyses are a society 's hope of progress, growth and evolution; and hopefully the first step to avoid a zombie-apocalypse scale systematic failure.
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