David Cameron acknowledged in this week’s PMQs that the UK is under serious threat from coordinated zombie attacks. In light of this, Sara Yasin reviews an important book that draws on years of zombie research to bring the Prime Minister the guidance he desperately needs to protect all our brains.

In his latest book, Theories of International Politics and Zombies, Daniel W. Drezner discusses how major theories of international politics would address the rise of a zombie attack. Coordinated attacks from brain-hungry zombies are of course one of the most pressing security issues for the government to address, as David Cameron acknowledged during this week’s PMQs. This book could not be more timely.

A professor of international politics at the Fletcher School at Tufts, as well as a member of the Zombie Research Society, Drezner’s book draws upon current discussions in the international community. Through an analysis of zombie-themed films including Night of the Living Dead (1968), Drezner aims to answer the following question: “What would different theories of international relations predict would happen if zombies started roaming the earth?”

Combined with examples from such films, Drezner also draws upon the policies of different nations to theorize about how they would cope with an attack from the undead. He draws upon examples from current events in order to hypothesize about what would actually occur in such situations. In particular, he primarily focuses on realism, liberalism, constructivism, neo-conservatism, bureaucratic politics, and domestic politics. Drezner does a great job of summarizing the different theories, and successfully differentiates them.

The author actually takes a deep look into zombies, and analyzes them as the very legitimate threat to international security that they are. The greatest strength of the book lies in how thought provoking it is; the questions that Drezner asks are pertinent to exploring how the international community must cope with other problems that impact us all, such as epidemics, or maybe even an uprising of robots.

Another strength of the book is its simplicity. It actually serves as an easy way to differentiate between major perspectives on international policy. The topic of zombies actually makes the discussion of international politics less intimidating and more interesting and would therefore be a great way to create wonderful dialogue in the classroom.

I have never had a particular fondness for zombies, but I still enjoyed the pop culture references. A zombie enthusiast reading this book would probably find it even more enjoyable. Smart, funny, creative, and thought provoking, Theories of International Politics and Zombies is a worthwhile and engaging read, and is essential reading for all political leaders if the fight against zombies is ever to be won.

Theories of International Politics and Zombies. Daniel D Drezner. Princeton. January 2011.

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