From Popular Mechanics:
In most pop-zombie lore, zombies have been infected with a contagion that turns them into mindless, soulless monsters on the hunt for human flesh. Even if a reanimated corpse used to be your mother/father/brother/girlfriend/BFF, now it’s a zombie, and it has to die. End of story.
But the latest film in the zombie lexicon, Warm Bodies, turns that convention on its head. An over-thinking zombie falls in love. He thinks and feels.
Which raises an interesting philosophical question: Are zombies hopeless automatons who should be killed without hesitation? Or do zombies experience consciousness?
. . . .
They’re just sick people, argues Steven Schlozman, author of The Zombie Autopsie sand an assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. “We would never say that somebody that is sick with another kind of disease isn’t conscious.”
In Schlozman’s view, zombies are much like a crocodile. They may not be conscious in the same way humans are, but they are aware of their surroundings and respond to their environment.
Link to the rest at Popular Mechanics