The Origins Of The English Word Zombie

Zumbi (1927) by Antônio Parreiras
Leslie Taylor-Grover
April 9, 2021

Their small community stood out among all others. Their King, Zumbi, was not just called King, he was called the “King of Free Men.” Zumbi had been born free – and he was going to ensure his people were free, too.

Zumbi’s community was self-sufficient and didn’t need to compromise with anyone for their freedom, including white colonizers. They weren’t about to become anybody’s slaves, and they weren’t about to pay fees to be left alone either! But there is one thing they certainly WOULD do.

They would fight relentlessly to remain free! For decades, Zumbi led his people in a war against the colonizers seeking to exploit Brazil and enslave them. 

They remained free – but then something awful happened that would forever change not just Brazil, but world history.

Zumbi was captured and beheaded. But his people STILL didn’t give up their freedom. They instead sought revenge by ambushing plantation owners and chopping off THEIR heads! 

The racists now lived in constant fear of being beheaded. They even coined a name for Zumbi’s followers – one you may be familiar with.

Zombi – or “Zombies.” Black liberation has always terrified white supremacists, who believed Zumbi and his people returned from the dead to stalk and kill them! 

Our power threatens and terrifies white supremacy – we must never forget that!

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