Archive for the ‘Commentary’ Category

(Click on the above box or any image for an expanded view) AUTHORS Julia M. Hildebrand (Drexel University) and Barry Vacker (Temple University) 1. INTRODUCTION Anthropocene — Mediacene. Layers of fossils — Layers of media technology. Ways of living — Ways of seeing. If we are in the Anthropocene, then how can we not be in the Mediacene? […]


The celebrity has replaced the hero in our image-based politics—and now we’ve got one on steroids. By Arthur W. Hunt III • April 4, 2018 During the heat of the of the 2016 presidential campaign some thoughtful observers mused that if Donald Trump became president, the White House would become a TV reality show. The national news cycle […]


Marshall McLuhan wrote in his Introduction to the Second Edition of  Understanding Media: “The power of the arts to anticipate future social and technological developments, by a generation and more, has long been recognized. In this century Ezra Pound called the artist ‘the antennae of the race’. Art as radar acts as ‘an early alarm […]


Message delivered: Tarragon to premiere long-awaited Marshall McLuhan play, The Message The February 22, 2018 issue of the Toronto Globe & Mail newspaper reports that a play by Canadian playwright Jason Sherman titled The Message that had originally been scheduled for their 2003 – 04 season is one of the seven Canadian plays to be staged […]


Mobile Phone Evolution 1992 – 2014 This is a short excerpt from an excellent wide-ranging and philosophical essay about Marshall McLuhan, his main ideas, and mobile phones that deserves to be read in full. It is also well-written. Follow the link at the bottom to do so. The Mobile Phone By Peter Benson … Let us consider […]


For beginners studying Marshall McLuhan’s ideas, I usually recommend that they read the famous Playboy interview (1969) in which he is resolutely cogent and unambiguous for a non-academic reading audience, proving that he could be that when he wanted to be. You can download a PDF of it here https://goo.gl/13QXas.  Second, I recommend that they read his The […]


for Youth Arts, Manifesto, Toronto 2012. Photo by Leah Snyder 2013 THE YEAR OF THE ARTIST: McLuhan’s Musings on the Role of the Artist in Society Art as Survival Thrival in the Electric Digital Age “The job of the artist is to upset all the senses and thus provide new vision and new powers of adjusting to and relating […]


The Medium Is the Message Broadcast on BBC Radio 4, January 20, 2018, 8PM (3 PM EST North America) Generation X author Douglas Coupland explores the ideas, sound, and vision of media seer Marshall McLuhan who in the 1960s coined the phrases “the medium is the message” and “the global village”. Marshall McLuhan was the first […]


Superman, Supergirl & Krypto (Art by Curt Swan, 1962) McLuhan’s Cool Comics by Guy Leshinski   –   Sept. 28, 2005 In his first book, 1951’s The Mechanical Bride, McLuhan reproached the Man of Steel, calling Superman’s crime-fighting tactics “the strong-arm totalitarian methods of the immature and barbaric mind.” He was more favourable a few years later when surveying the medium […]


Marshall McLuhan & Walter Ong seated to his left By Nick Ripatrazone   –   Dec. 27. 2017 “I make probes,” wrote Marshall McLuhan. “I don’t explain—I explore.” In 1967 he published The Medium Is the Massage, an eccentric journey into how our senses experience electric media. That same year, Walter Ong, S.J.—whose graduate thesis adviser happened to be […]