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Essential McLuhan

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  150 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
Essential McLuhan brings together in one concise volume key writings by Marshall McLuhan, the hugely influential guru of the mass media. Today, in a communications environment transformed by the rapid spread of electronic media, McLuhan's insights are fresher and more applicable today than when he first announced them to a startled world in the 1960s. A whole new generatio ...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published June 5th 1997 by Routledge (first published August 1995)
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Apr 26, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Difficult but can be fun

not something i typically read through but there are a few passages or pieces in this compilation that are serious, difficult, challenging--the type of critical thinking one might do in college. but who wants that for weekend reading
T for Tongue-tied
There were two things that brought me close to McLuhan when I first came across his writings back in my university times - Woody Allen's "Annie Hall" and my never-ceasing fascination and interest in the communication theory. Reading him again after so many years was a great intellectual experience - it reminded me how much of a unique personality and mind-blowing breakthrough he was. His book is truly fascinating, although it may pose a considerable challenge if someone hasn't got a solid humani ...more
Feb 26, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overrated at best.
Dec 02, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cultural-study
Marshall McLuhan is the Canadian media theorist who became famous in the sixties for coining phrases like “global village” and “the medium is the message.” His work remains important for understanding the cultural changes as new technologies like the Internet transform our ways of getting information and communicating with one another. This book includes essays, letters, interviews, aphorisms and excerpts from McLuhan’s books. Moreover, it deploys various devices of the printed page: double colu ...more
Notes from finals - particularly on MEDIUM IS THE MESSAGE:

The perspective that McLuhan presents in line with vision and objectivity gives insight to the interactivity that is involved in the process of decoding meaning from word. The process of deciphering visual codes and analyzing them has a productive, imaginative element to it. Writing, therefore, is regarded as a technology that provides that medium in which symbols are put together to produce words, and words provide meaning. This act of p
A nice collection of his more important essays. Sometimes brilliant sometimes ridiculous. It can be difficult to get through, as all theory is, but its worth it. He was an excellent brain. Only critique is that he tended to think in a very Eurocentric manner so his theories about the 'global village' are not really that global at all.
Nov 08, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great collection -- includes McLuhan's infamous Playboy interview, one of his most lucid moments. And I love the collection of quotes -- perfect for a master of aphorism. "If I turn off this mike my relationship to you is changed instantly." to Mike Wallace in 1966, p. 273.
Meg Coulson
Lots of interesting ideas, but a lot of the material in this compilation is repetitive. Book would have been easier to understand (I think) if I had ever read Finnegans Wake, Ulysses, and King Lear. McLuhan refers to them constantly as examples of various theories in action.
great quotes, sometimes more than i could understand, but they guy had a head on his shoulders, and many of his thoughts are pretty prophetic right about now (in the 2000s)
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Herbert Marshall McLuhan, CC, was a Canadian educator, philosopher, and scholar — a professor of English literature, a literary critic, and a communications theorist. McLuhan's work is viewed as one of the cornerstones of the study of media theory. McLuhan is known for coining the expressions "the medium is the message" and the "global village".

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