World War Z

World War Z


Max Brooks

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Nyathi witnessed the first big zombie attack on people which captured the world’s attention. This occurred early one morning in a small township outside of Cape Town, South Africa, among the huts and shanties in a poor neighborhood. Nyathi was returning from work when he saw people screaming and running, and heard gunshots. Soon, he encountered a horde of zombies but managed to escape. The South African police shot him, mistaking him for a zombie, and when he was recovering in a hospital, he heard everyone talking about the incident and the disease they had named “African rabies.” Nyathi’s account shows the first time that the zombies attacked en masse and caused enough destruction and death that they could no longer be ignored. However, people’s understanding of the virus was poor in those early days, and misclassifying it as a type of rabies would end up confusing people later (especially in America when Breckinridge Scott would falsely market a rabies vaccine as a preventative against the zombie virus).
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Jacob Nyathi Character Timeline in World War Z

The timeline below shows where the character Jacob Nyathi appears in World War Z. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1: Warnings
Fear Theme Icon
Bridgetown Harbor, Barbados, West Indies Federation. Jacob Nyathi, a sea captain in the West Indies, says that he was born in South Africa.... (full context)
Fear Theme Icon
A zombie attacked Nyathi from behind, and he saw that it had a knife sticking out of its chest... (full context)
Humanity vs. Monstrosity Theme Icon
Nyathi ran into blinding headlights and felt something hid his shoulder right before he passed out.... (full context)