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ERIC Number: ED035623
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1969-Jul
Pages: 19
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
McLuhan and the Future of Literature.
West, Rebecca
Marshall McLuhan's belief that our electric age is moving away from literacy entails unconvincing theories about the relationship of man to communications media. One such doctrine is that society has always been influenced more by the nature of the media than by the content of the message communicated. McLuhan divides media into two types: hot media which feed a single sense with a message full of facts and which are low in participation; cool media which give few facts and require the recipient to actively complete the message and which are high in participation. Reading a book is hot; watching television is cold. According to McLuhan, only television of all communication media involves us with everybody and gives us desirable tactile involvement. The acceptance of McLuhan's beliefs by young people can lead to alienation from the educational and social structures of the society and to an obsession with involvement, role-playing, and ego gratification. Teachers and critics must oppose "the tacit approval of emptiness" at the core of McLuhan's glorification of illiteracy, for in playing a role rather than doing a job, the young person grows up ill-equipped to carry out long-range plans or to function productively in a culture. (JM)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: McLuhan (Marshall)
Note: 1969 Presidential Address for the English Association (England)