'Feted and reviled in his own lifetime, Marshall McLuhan has made a dramatic comeback in recent years. Marchessault gives a balanced and carefully considered appraisal of McLuhan’s contribution to cultural theory, which may be even more pertinent now, in the early twenty-first century, than when he originally formulated it in the 1950s and ‘60s' Jim McGuigan, Professor of Cultural Analysis, Loughborough University Why is McLuhan important? What use can we make of his approach to the media today? In this insightful critical introduction, McLuhan's contribution is carefully explained and his reputation reassessed. The book: · Explains McLuhan's key ideas · Engages with critical issues in media and contemporary art · Demonstrates the relevance of his work for students of media and communications · Addresses his methodological contribution · Revises our understanding of his place in the history of ideas. Illustrated with many examples from the network society, the book works as a guide to anyone who wants to know why McLuhan is important.

The Project for Understanding Media

The Project for Understanding Media

The project for understanding media

McLuhan's project, as I have been describing it, provides a method for studying the effects of the forms of communication on cognitive functions and culture, on social relations and knowledge systems, and finally on global interactions. There is no doubt that McLuhan's work from the early 1960s onwards appears increasingly non-dialectical and often ahistorical. He begins numerous collaborations with artists and designers and his books (many of them photo-collages) are far more aphoristic and rhetorical than works of rigorous scholarship. His media studies become more performative, and his research is increasingly concerned with curriculum for the new discipline of Communication Studies, as well as for popular consumption.

While The Gutenberg Galaxy tells us that the term ‘environment’ ...

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