Marshall Mcluhan

Submitted by on Sep 21, 2015

Marshall McLuhan (McLuhan Herbert Marshall)

(Canadian scholar, researcher of the psychological and social consequences of the development of language and communication media.)


Born in Edmonton (Alberta, Canada), July 21, 1911. He studied at the University of Manitoba (Winnipeg, Canada) (1928-1934) and the University of Cambridge (England) (1934-1936), where in 1943 received a doctorate in rhetoric thesis Thomas Nash’s place in the book culture of his time (The Place of Thomas Nash in the Learning of his Time). Specialist literature of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, taught at several American and Canadian universities. From 1948 he taught at the Catholic college of St. Michael at the University of Toronto (since 1952 a professor), where in 1963 headed the Center for the Study of Culture and Technology. In 1973 he was appointed advisor to the Pontifical Commission for Social Communications. Died McLuhan in Toronto December 31, 1980.

Most of all McLuhan is known for his studies of the effect of different methods of mass communication (QMS) and new technologies on the formation of human perception and society. On McLuhan . the emergence of writing, and in modern times the creation of Gutenberg printing press led to the fact that people began to worry about things like the following one after the other (like the letters in the text), linear and consistent manner, characteristic of visual perception, in contrast to the hearing. In place of ‘tribal’ people, residents of the village, a man came ‘printing and industrial. ” In cultures ‘Gutenberg Galaxy’ line number (logic koveyer assembly, the chain of commands) have become the main model for the organization of any application of force.

The emergence of electric and electronic QMS (telegraph, telephone, radio, television) has transformed the modern world in a new ‘global village’ in which everything happens at once – thanks to almost instantaneous spread of electrical or radio signal – becomes aware all its inhabitants, and each new event is accompanied with others. According to the McLuhan . electronic QMS contribute to the decentralization of the global society and the implementation of the maximum odds on all issues, which leads to increased instability and the potential explosiveness of the modern world. At sunset ‘book era you need to part with the traditional forms of thinking and ways of social, political and economic organization. To control this world need engineering, process management methods, such as those used in the management of a modern economy.

In the new communication environment, ‘e-society’, the occurrence of which McLuhan refers to the mid-1950s, the center of gravity moves to the contents of the communicative message (message) to the actual transmission medium (medium) of the communication. Becomes important information, and the method of transmission. This idea was a lover of aphorisms McLuhan expressed in the paradoxical formula ‘the medium is the message’, ie message that is transmitted means of communication, is itself a means. In 1967, McLuhan has published a book of aphorisms titled, punning reinterpreted this formula and the line is called the impact on the people of the QMS ‘massage’. The book The Medium is the Massage: An Inventory of Effects sold a total circulation of 1 million copies.

By media – means of communication, communication – McLuhan include a variety of things, objects, tools, effects (clothes, car, bank notes, advertising, electric light, etc.), the word all that becomes an extension, an extension of the person (as a stick or a gun become an extension of the human hand). They are the opposite effect on humans (for example, the creation of mechanical watches has changed the idea of ​​the nature of time – discrete linear time has come to replace the continuous-cyclic) is seen in the book means of interpersonal communication (Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, 1964). It examines the form (grammar) of the various means of communication, the transition from one form to another, and the social consequences of such transitions.

Special attention is McLuhan paid TV, where mosaic presentation of information and rapid change ‘pictures’ destroy habitual logical linear-sequential perception of reality, forcing the viewer to instantly link fractional mosaic images into some coherent picture.

Among the other works McLuhan – the book Mechanical Bride (The Mechanical Bride, 1951), in which he showed how under the influence of technology and marketing of packaging products were formed folklore of the industrial era; Paragraph extinction (Through the Vanishing Point, in 1968, co-authored), Inner Landscape: Marshall McLuhan – the literary critic (The Interior Landscape: The Literary Criticism of Marshall McLuhan . 1969), from the cliché to the archetype (From Clich to Archetype, 1970, co-authored).

Critics and admirers of the Canadian theoretician of the information society gives him all sorts of epithets from ‘clown’, ‘utopian’ to ‘oracle electronic age’, ‘prophet’ and ‘guru’ QMS ‘new Rousseau’. He has been compared to Darwin, Einstein and Freud.

Ideas McLuhan . widely spread in the 1960s, we experienced a renaissance in the 1990s in connection with the spread of personal computers and the advent of ‘World Wide Web’.

Marshall McluhanMarshall Mcluhan
Marshall McluhanMarshall Mcluhan
Marshall McluhanMarshall Mcluhan

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