Marshall McLuhan

Wendy, nice work! You have captured major themes in McLuhan’s doctrine. I

have highlighted your best points in red.

Once in a while the meaning is not completely clear (see the blue line below).

Wendy Palacios
Team 5
Marshall McLuhan, is a philosopher and professor known for his studies in media theory. His explicit use of the critical perspective has made him a public intellectual. The critical perspective is defined as a means to understanding communication and how it affects and shapes our culture. One of its many characteristics aims for individuals to use a more demanding thought process by questioning assumptions. An immeasurable amount of people use easy shortcuts like assumptions to pass judgement. This is a useless tool and effortless method of thought.

In accordance with Mcluhan’s literature “ Understanding Media” he analyzed the affects typography had on the psychic and social consequences of the culture. In today’s modern time the same effects are upon us with the electric media. He later proceeds to translate the extensions of man by explaining that whether it’s clothing or a computer, humans are sensitive to print. A human’s direct inspection and awareness has become numb. It’s simple to assume the content of the electric media is what shapes society. In reality, the electric media covers various content from what is deemed to be in style to overactive news reports on discrimination towards certain ethnic groups. GOOD

If one were to think critically, without assumption they would come to question the culture of society. Are things really in style or are people following what the media has considered to be a trend? Are certain ethnic groups consistently being discriminated against everyday or is the media popularizing the content to the stimuli? McLuhan advises us not to assume but rather understand and carry an intellectual thought process.

Identically, he specifies on talks about the incredible change technology will impact on the human society. A well known phrase established by McLuhan goes as followed “The Medium Is The Message”. The medium is determined as the print in the message. People see the message as a large rather than a medium. McLuhan wants people to transfer their awareness on how the message is being communicated and it existence instead of fixating on the message. As he brings awareness to this issue, he is implementing the critical perspective by expanding the bounds of debate and betterment for society.

As has been noted, on an interview with Playboy Magazine from 1969, Marshall McLuhan stated “Today, in the electronic age of instantaneous communication, I believe that our survival, and at the very least our comfort and happiness, is predicted on understanding the nature of our new environment, because unlike previous environmental changes, the electric media constitute a total and near-instantaneous transformation of culture, values and attitudes.” His prediction to the affects of the electronic media is a warning for people to turn on their critical sensibility and debate within themselves. Doing so will not only better the individuals but the society as a whole.He illustrated the impact media will have on man as a trance people one will become a slave to.


Primacy of vision, commodification, individuality, including more concepts he cites as changes caused by the media of printing.[WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?]



Once it is understood that the median is the message rather than the mass will be the day humans break free from the chains of the electronic age.




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