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“The new electronic independence re-creates the world in the image of a global village.” November 18, 2010

Filed under: COM130 — kaylablankenship @ 4:48 am

Getting to know…

Herbert Marshall McLuhan was born July 21, 1911 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. A man who was known for many thing’s is most remembered by his work with media and its effects. In the early 1950’s McLuhan began Communication and Culture Seminars, which were funded by the Ford Foundation. McLuhan published his first major work during this period, The Mechanical Bride. The Mechanical Bride was an examination of the effect of advertising on society and culture. Many people claim that The Mechanical Bride pioneered the way to pop culture. The Gutenberg Galaxy pioneered the way in fields such as oral culture, print culture, media ecology, and cultural studies. In this book McLuhan reveals how communication technology affects cognitive organization. Communication students should have to study Marshall McLuhan, because he pioneered the way to the field of Communications we have today. He explored almost every possible inch he could about media and communications. McLuhan informed us of what he thought and believe was going to happen. He taught us media changes everyday.

It’s all about the legacy you leave…

After McLuhan’s Understanding Media was published, he received a ton of publicity. He soon became the most publicized English teacher in the twentieth century, and very controversial. In Understanding Media McLuhan suggest that media, not the content it self, should be the main focus of study. He assumed that content had little to no effect on our society, it didn’t matter if television broadcasts little kid shows or gruesome television shows, for example. In all the effect of television on our society would be merely identical. McLuhan also refer’s to the media as being “hot” and “cold.” Take movies for instance, McLuhan states that movies were “hot” because they enhance a single sense, vision. Where a person does not need to put in much effort in to figuring out a movie image. Where as in “cold” T.V. it requires more effort to determine the meaning of what you are seeing. Comics for example, sometimes when you look at a comic you don’t understand what the cartoonist is trying to portray, so you have to put in effort to look deep in the comic to understand what he or she is trying to portray.

Famous means that you’re the best…

While I was surfing the internet trying to find information on the great Marshall McLuhan, I came across a quote of his which I just can’t seem to forget. McLuhan once stated, “we drive into the future using only our rear view mirror.” This quote could not be anymore true, McLuhan was a man who thought about the future everyday of his life. Every little thing we do today shapes the big things we do, have, or see in the future. Which brings me to another one of his quotes, “we become what we behold. We shape our tools and then our tools shape us.” What we do with media and communication today, will forever change the media and communication of tomorrow. We are always told the actions we make now will effect the actions we make tomorrow. McLuhan took that theory and applied it to media. The tools of media shape our news, entertainment, and much much more.

Living through today…

Finding information on McLuhan wasn’t difficult at all, while I was searching I found in article written this year titled “My Boys From Iraq” from the CLO. In the article the author states one of McLuhans famous quotes, “We don’t know who discovered water, but we know it wasn’t the fish.” The author talks about how he and his wife had two Iraqi students come and stay with them, to build and learn good understanding of different cultures. You will find McLuhan mentioned in any given communications or media class with out a doubt. I have the feeling that even my kids will be learning about him (but thats besides the point). McLuhan mapped out the road that lead us to where we are today in media and communication and even though he is gone, he lives through each and every communcations, media, cultural person. The man was a genius, in communications, in media, and in life. 

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One Response to ““The new electronic independence re-creates the world in the image of a global village.””

  1. Heresiarch Says:

    I rescued from cassette this talk that Marshall McLuhan gave at Johns Hopkins University in the mid 1970s. I have not found an audio file of this talk anywhere online. So far as I know it’s an original contribution to the archive of McLuhan audio. Enjoy. Rare McLuhan Audio


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