A tribute to and a lament for Marshall McLuhan continues. If he had lived Marshall would have been 100 on July 21, 2011. Join me in the countdown to his centennial, and an exploration of more of his observations on the way media work in the electric age in which we live.

Business is our culture.

Marshall McLuhan (1970, age 59). You can learn a lot from ads

Today, with the movement of information at electronic speeds, “business and culture have become interchangeable.”  This is why I pay so much attention to advertisements.  To watch an ad is to be immersed in the culture within which the ad is designed to be persuasive.  In the future a historian who wanted to understand this age of ours could do so easily by studying our ads.

Me (December, 2010, age 58). Possibly.

If Marshall is right we should be able to discover a great deal about the differences between the 1950s and 1960s by examining these two ads, the first from the 1950s the second from the 1960s.  In the interests of science I have tried to hold constant as many variables as possible.

1950s

1960s

Cordially, Marshall and Me

Reading:

Marshall McLuhan, Culture is Our Business, 1970, “author’s note.”

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Michael Hinton Saturday, December 18th, 2010
Permalink 1970s and 80s, Business, Communication, Culture 2 Comments

2 Comments to Business is our culture.

  • Dora Koop says:

    would be interesting to see the ads right up until today….would we be more politically correct.

  • Don says:

    Michael,

    You definitely know your science.

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