H. Marshall McLuhan was a prolific writer and interpretivist thinker whose works are often cited but rarely fully understood. I make no claim to fully understand McLuhan either but I will do my best to provide a good foundation for at least one of his favorite topics – media as an extension of our senses/bodies. I will first introduce the differences between positivist and interpretivist epistemological philosophies and use this to help explain why McLuhan may baffle “serious” media scholars. We will then look at McLuhan’s view of tribalization, the alphabet and the Gutenberg Galaxy. Some questions I am hoping to answer or to propose include:

  • Why do media scholars scoff (or plainly ignore) the mention of McLuhan in “serious” academic settings?
  • What are McLuhan’s interpretation of the ages of man leading to the global village?
  • What technologies have we invented to extend our senses?
  • What sense(s) do the computer, wii or eBook extend?
  • Would McLuhan use YouTube or WordPress today?
  • Would McLuhan even have an email address today?
  • Anecdotal Question – Why is his book titled “The Medium is the Massage” when the actual phrase is the medium is the message? And what does that mean?

Stay Tuned – I will be updating this post with a book review once I finish “Marshall McLuhan: You Know Nothing of My Work” by Douglas Coupland (Links to Amazon).

Official Site: http://marshallmcluhan.com/

Link to Prezi in development: http://prezi.com/bg8fhj1fj6dd/historical-figure-mmcluhan/?auth_key=59d2cc6aa98aebd9bcebc2a52b7c86215f999776

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