Chera Kee

Chera Kee

Associate Professor, Film & Media Studies
Director of Graduate Studies

Room 10407, English Department, 5057 Woodward Ave (personal office)

Room 9407, English Department, 5057 Woodward Ave (DGS office)





Chera Kee

Research interest(s)/area of expertise

Film and Media Studies, Pop Culture, Fandom, Horror (especially zombie media), Race, and Gender


Dr. Kee's first book, Not Your Average Zombie: Re-Humanizing the Zombie from Voodoo to Zombie Walks (University of Texas Press, 2017) examines what she terms "extra-ordinary zombies" throughout U.S. media, claiming that these zombies--who can talk, love, and even dance--are far more prolific than one might believe. In fact, zombie media is full of very un-zombie-like zombies who resist and/or escape the objectification that zombiism would seem to imply.

Dr. Kee's second book, an exploration of the zombie in comic books, explores the ways in which zombiism and superheroic conventions intersect in American comics. She argues that the zombie's early beginnings in action/adventure and superhero titles of the 1930s and '40s transformed the zombie in ways that are still apparent today and that shed light on the relative ease or difficulty some bodies face in becoming superheroic. The book, titled Corpse Crusaders: The Zombie in American Comics, is forthcoming from the University of Michigan Press (Fall 2024).

Dr. Kee has also written about Star Wars, fandom, and visual trickery in 19th century Spiritualist entertainments, and her upcoming work includes a project on the animated television show, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, as well as a monograph on fandom and intertextuality.


  • Ph.D., Critical Studies, School of Cinematic Arts, University of Southern California (2011)
  • M.A., Critical Studies, School of Cinematic Arts, University of Southern California (2006)
  • A.M., Regional Studies East Asia, Harvard University (2003)

Selected publications


Not Your Average Zombie: Rehumanizing the Undead from Voodoo to Zombie Walks (University of Texas Press, September 2017).

Journal Articles, Essays, and Chapters

“The Horror of the 1980s: Mirror Worlds and the Past in the Present Moment,” The Routledge Companion to History and the Moving Image, eds. Kim Nelson, Mia Treacey, and Marnie Hughes-Warrington (Routledge, 2023): 114-128.

“The Ghosts in the Machine: Screened Reality and the Desktop Film,” Lit: Literature Interpretation Theory, “Emerging Trends in Twenty-First-Century Horror” special issue, eds. Karen J. Renner and Dawn Keetley 33.2 (2022): 131-151.

“Beware the Zuvembies: Comics, Censorship, and the Ubiquity of Not-Quite Zombies,” Theorizing The Contemporary Zombie: Contextual Pasts, Presents, and Futures, eds. Scott Hamilton and Conor Heffernan (University of Wales Press, 2022): 179-196.

“No Grave Can Hold Them: Night of the Living Dead and the Rise and Rebirth of Zombies in Comics,” Beyond the Living Dead: Essays on the Romero Legacy, eds. Bruce Peabody and Gloria Pastorino, Contributions to Zombie Studies series (McFarland, 2021): 32-53.

“If You Leave, You’ll Have to Work for a Living: Economic Fantasies of the Dissident Undead,” Interdisciplinary Approaches to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse (2017):

“Poe Dameron Hurts So Prettily: How Fandom Negotiates with Transmedia Characterization,” NANO: New American Notes Online 12 (Dec. 2017): Fandom-Negotiates-with-Transmedia-Characterization.

"Good Girls Don't Date Dead Boys: Toying with Miscegenation in Zombie Films," The Journal of Popular Film and Television 42.4 (Dec. 2014): 176-185.

"Negotiated Seeing: Ghosts, Frauds, and the Empowered Spiritualist Spectator," The Spiritualist Movement: Speaking with the Dead in America and Around the World, vol. 3, ed. Christopher M. Moreman (ABC-CLIO, 2013): 207-224.

"They are Not Men...They are Dead Bodies!': From Cannibal to Zombie and Back Again," Better Off Dead: The Evolution of the Zombie as Post-Human, eds. Deborah Christie and Sarah Juliet Lauro (Fordham UP, 2011): 9-23.

Courses taught by Chera Kee

Fall Term 2024 (future)

Winter Term 2024 (current)

Fall Term 2023

Spring-Summer Term 2023

Winter Term 2023

Fall Term 2022

Winter Term 2022