Pittsburg State Offers Class on Monsters, Zombies

J.In.MexicoKPR's J. Schafer mingles with the dead (or perhaps the un-dead) Sunday at the airport in Cancun, Mexico. As Americans celebrate Halloween this week, citizens of Mexico prepare to celebrate a similar holiday on November 1st: Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. (Photo by random tourist.)

PITTSBURG, Kan. (AP) — Pittsburg State University is offering an academic take on zombies, vampires and other things that go bump in the night. The school says assistant English professor Jamie McDaniel is planning a Halloween lecture titled "Let's Talk Monsters." The public is invited to attend for free at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday in Grubbs Hall. McDaniel plans to trace the origins of today's monster culture, from Bram Stoker's "Dracula" and voodoo zombie rites through the "Twilight" series and "The Walking Dead." The school hopes that the "Let's Talk" lecture will be the first in a series. Monsters, scary stories and frightening films are McDaniel's specialties. He says that in elementary and middle school, he read plenty of books by R.L. Stine, the youth author whose books include "Goosebumps."