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Undead Uprising

Undead Uprising by John Cussans

Events - Live

Undead Uprising by John Cussans

Book Launch

18 Jan 2018

Book launch with author John Cussans and Wendy Asquith
Undead Uprising: Haiti, Horror and the Zombie Complex traces the history of racist and xenophobic representations of Haiti through the chimerical optics of voodoo-terror. It asks how such depictions have contributed to the historical occlusion of Haiti as the first Black, post-colonial and slave-free republic of modern times, and their continued role in perpetuating the image of Haiti as a land mired in primitive superstition and incapable of socio-economic progress.
The central figure in this story is the zombie, whose profoundly ambivalent behavioural traits – insurrectionary, apocalyptic cannibal or mind-controlled automaton – have their roots in colonial fantasies about African slaves during and after the Haitian revolution. Returning the contemporary zombie figure to its origins in the transposition of African religious traditions to the plantation economy of Saint-Domingue, Undead Uprising explores the philosophical, psychological and political debates associated with these incessant agents-without-autonomy, and their uncanny relevance for the contemporary cultural politics of race, technology, identity and agency.
Free. Café.Bar
John Cussans is an artist and writer based in London. His work explores the theoretical and practical convergences of art, religion, politics, psychology and popular culture. Since 2009 he has been involved with the Ghetto Biennale, Port-au-Prince, often working with the local video collective Tele Geto. His current project The Skullcracker Suite - inspired by the giant cannibal crane of Kwakwaka’wakw legend - investigates processes of decolonization in British Columbia since the 1960’s from perspectives drawn from speculative, inter-planetary science-fiction. He is currently the MFA course leader at the Ruskin School of Art, Oxford.


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