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.
Marshall McLuhan (1960, age 49) For your information someÂ questions
“Is the telephone extremely demanding of individual attention? Is it abrupt, intrusive, and indifferent to human concerns?”
Me (June 2011, age 58) Well?
These are just two of the questions in Marshall McLuhan’s 1960 “Report on Project in Understanding New Media” which was intended asÂ a high school textbook on media studies and wound up being the first draft of his 1964 best seller Understanding Media. It is probable the book would have flopped as a high school textbook, but the questions have much to teach anyone who is willing to tussle with them. For example these two beg the answers, yes and yes.Â Knowing this will you always be so eager to call knowing what effect you’reÂ having?
Cordially, Marshall andÂ Me
McLuhan:Hot and Cool, edited by Gerald Emanuel Stearn. New York,Â 1967, p. 157