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.

The name unmaketh the man or woman.

Marshall McLuhan (1970, age 59).  Nixon for example.    

Boswell said it rightly, “There is something in names that we cannot help feeling.”  Would Nixon have lost to Kennedy if he hadn’t been saddled with his rejection-inviting name.  Is there anything sexy about someone wearing a miniskirt named Twiggy?

 

Me (March, 2011, age 58).  Is he serious?

Apparently.  This is an idea that keeps popping up in McLuhan’s writing.  A rose by any other name he is saying would not smell as sweet.  But if you don’t like the idea, don’t worry about it.  He’s got others.  Too bad about that Twiggy, though.  If not for that name she really could have been something:

 

 

 Cordially, Marshall and Me

 

Reading: 

Marshall McLuhan, Culture Is Our Business, 1970, p. 276 and 304.

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Michael Hinton Thursday, March 24th, 2011
Permalink 1950s and 60s, Communication, Technology No Comments

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