‘World War Z’ and Claremont

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Careful readers of the book “World War Z” have noted one incident in the war against zombies takes place at the Claremont Colleges. In full:

“Just outside of Greater Los Angeles, in a town called Claremont, are five colleges – Pomona, Pitzer, Scripps, Harvey Mudd and Claremont McKenna College. At the start of the Great Panic, when everyone else was literally running for the hills, three hundred college students chose to make a stand. They turned the Women’s College at Scripps into something resembling a medieval city. They got their supplies from the other campuses; their weapons were a mix of gardening tools and ROTC rifles. They planted gardens, dug wells, fortified an already existing wall. While the mountains burned behind them, and the surrounding suburbs descended into violence, those 300 kids held off 10,000 zombies! Ten thousand over the course of four months, until the Inland Empire could finally be purified. We were lucky to get there just at the tail end, just in time to see the last of the undead fall, as cheering students and soldiers linked up under the oversized, homemade Old Glory fluttering from the Pomona bell tower.”

Max Brooks, author of the 2006 novel, is a 1994 Pitzer graduate, and he gave the college’s 2011 commencement. A Claremont McKenna College writeup tells the whole story and links to a video of his speech.

The movie version, starring Brad Pitt (presumably not as a zombie) and probably not featuring the Claremont Colleges, is due in theaters Friday.

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  • John Clifford

    Knowing all of this, I gave my graphics students the assignment to create an invitation for a fictitious Pitzer alumni screening of the film at the Leammele Theater with Max as a special guest. They did quite well.

  • Ronald Scott

    Id have loved if they had included the colleges, seeing as how I use to be security there Id be one of the ones helping to keep the zombies at bay!!!