Marshall McLuhan: The Medium and the Messenger

Marshall McLuhan: The Medium and the Messenger

by Philip Marchand

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A new look at the man who gave us ideas "the medium is the message" and "global village".See more details below


A new look at the man who gave us ideas "the medium is the message" and "global village".

Editorial Reviews

LA Book Review
The best -- I might say the only good -- précis of McLuhan's thought I have ever read.
LA Times Book Review
The best -- I might say the only good -- precis of McLuhan's thought I have ever read.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Was media guru Marshall McLuhan a deep thinker, a charlatan, a '60s fad or a bit of all three? ``His books will probably be mined for years to come by clever prospectors hunting . . . for bits of invaluable ore,'' observes Marchand in this first full-scale biography. McLuhan grew up on the Canadian prairie and learned ``irrepressible verbal aggressiveness'' from his violent-tempered mother. He had a photographic memory and suffered repeated blackouts as an adult. He taught English at Cambridge University in the 1930s, becoming an ardent convert to Catholicism, a cultural conservative steeped in T. S. Eliot, scornful of popular culture. Then, at the University of Toronto, this self-described ``intellectual thug'' discovered his true metier in the global network of electronic media and communications. Marchand, who catalogued McLuhan's papers for the National Archives in Ottawa, painstakingly reconstructs the evolution of his thought in this revealing biography. Photos. (Mar.)
Library Journal
Almost 10 years after his death and 25 years after the publication of his Understanding Media ( LJ 6/1/64) , there is still much curiosity about McLuhan and his theories. These two books, different as they are, have one thing in common--they help to explain the man who claimed that electronic technology in the mass media has reshaped and restructured the patterns of our social and private lives and who gave us such familiar terms as ``the global village'' and ``the medium is the message.'' The books also complement each other rather nicely. Marchand's is a scholarly, straightforward account of McLuhan's life, with the facts and phases of his career presented in chronological order. The author has drawn in other pertinent material into the narrative, including excerpts of McLuhan's writings and talks, the comments of those who knew him, and this original thinker's emotional reactions to life. The Sanderson and Macdonald book is a representative selection of McLuhan's writings, including some of his famous aphorisms, and a collection of observations and essays about McLuhan by others. Both the McLuhan aficianado and the reader who knows little or nothing about him should be grateful for the opportunity to make his acquaintance in these books. See also McLuhan and Bruce Powers's The Global Village: Transformations in World Life and Media in the 21st Century , reviewed on p. 00.-- A.J. Anderson, G.S.L.I.S., Simmons Coll., Boston
From the Publisher
"Beautifully written— brings instant recognition of that weird, exhilarating vortex of ideas that McLuhanism meant to us." -The Globe and Mail

"An altogether splendid job... a labour of love— Thanks to Philip Marchand's biography, McLuhan, the man, is back." -The Toronto Star

"Brilliant— a graceful and eloquent discussion— [Marchand's] book is McLuhanesque." -Robert Fulford

"Intensely absorbing." -The New York Times

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Product Details

MIT Press
Publication date:
Edition description:
Revised Edition
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.80(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher

"The best—I might say the only good—précis of
McLuhan's thought Ihave ever read." Los Angeles Times Book

The MIT Press

"Beautifully written.... brings instant recognition of that weird,exhilarating vortex of ideas that McLuhan meant to us..." Globe and

The MIT Press

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